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Perfect in the Yi group: Stative and dynamic information management

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The languages of the Yi group shed new light on the Perfect forms of other languages through their perfect particles. Several Yi languages display two perfect particles which unite in one paradigmatic picture the English type and the Mandarin type. I will first present Liangshan Nuosu’s ta33 (stative perfect) and o44 (dynamic perfect) with Klein’s aspect-tense terminology (1992) and will then establish a formal definition of the notion of stative and dynamic perfect. It appears that both perfects have in common their relating the utterance situation to the discourse topic (in Klein’s terminology: TU þ TT). I will claim that the property ‘TU þ TT’ is the essence of perfect and can be viewed as an aspect-tense characterization of ‘current relevance’, a vague term that is employed by an array of authors without precise definition.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: La Trobe University, Melbourne

Publication date: September 1, 2002

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