A linguistic description of Phola

Phola is a Southeastern Ngwi language (Southeastern Tibeto-Burman) spoken by around 3000-4000 speakers in isolated pockets on the mountains along the deeper reaches of the Red River Valley of Southern Yunnan Province, The People's Republic of China. Historically, isolation from and scarce contact with other villages has led to a significant degree of dialectal diversification, mainly in lexicon and phonology but also in some aspects of grammatical structure.

Linguistics MTR Seminar: A history of politeness in the Bantawa pronoun system

In the seminar I will examine the variation of the politeness distinction attested in Bantawa varieties, which is devised by pluralising personal pronouns. I first present a synchronic analysis of the data which includes a categorisation of the different patterns. The diachronic explanation of the data begins with the reconstruction of proto-Bantawa followed by the analysis of the likely sequencing of the innovations. Furthermore, this analysis is considered along with oral migration history which provides relative dates for the various patterns.


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