XVI, 361 pp.
2 maps, 2 diagrams, numerous tables and charts
Text language: French
<strong>Naténi belongs to the Oti-Volta branch of the Gur languages and therefore is a part of the large Niger-Congo language family. It is spoken by approx. 30,000 people. Naténi is – as a Central Oti-Volta language – surrounded by East Oti-Volta languages, Byali in the North, Nyendé in the West, Ditammari in the South, and Waama in the East.
Naténi itself is divided into four dialects: Naténi (proper), Tayari, Kunteni, and Okoni. The dialect Naténi examined in this book is spoken in the Atakora province in North Bénin. The speakers are called Natemba.
The present work is aimed at describing and analysing the strategies of Naténi expressing the concept of semantic modification. Initially, the author shows that Naténi lacks the word class adjective to express categories of qualification. Consequently, nominal, verbal, and metaphoric-syntagmatic strategies are consulted to realise the seven adjectival functions or classes Dixon worked out with semantic, syntactic, and morphological criteria.
After a description of the phonology, morphology, and syntax of Naténi, the noun word class is extensively examined and analysed in consideration of its “adjectival” functions. Subsequent, constructions containing the thematical role of an “experiencer” which are used in Naténi to express semantic modification are researched. The work is completed by three appendices containing original Naténi texts.