Switch-Reference in Pastaza Kichwa

Pastaza Kichwa is a Quechuan language spoken in eastern Ecuador. This thesis describes its use of switch-reference which is traditionally understood to be an interclausal cross-referencing feature. Switch-reference is manifested by one of two morphemes that mark a subordinate clause as having either the same or different subject as another clause. Switch-reference has been described for other Quechuan languages and some of these studies present challenges to the theoretical underpinnings of switch reference (Stewart 1988, Dreidemie 2007) others present associated functions of switch-reference morphemes (Cole 1982). This study tests some of the propositions made about switch-reference in other Quechuan languages in Pastaza Kichwa.The data comes from the Corpus of Pastaza Kichwa which is a collection of 40 narrative texts. A broad statistical analysis of the switch-reference morphemes in the forty texts verified a distributional pattern posited by Stewart (1988). A sample of five texts was used for a closer in context analysis to examine adherence to proposed typological rules of canonical switch-reference, to test Stewart<'>s (1988) motivation for counter examples, and test additional functions proposed by Cole (1982).Analysis and results indicate that switch-reference in Pastaza Kichwa does not obey all of the typological rules of canonical switch-reference. Stewart<'>s proposed motivation proved inapplicable and potentially problematic, and that associated functions of switch-reference markers are due more to contextual factors rather than specific constructions.

Thesis Author: Alexander Harrison Rice

Year Completed: 2018

Thesis Chair: Janis Nuckolls


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