Books: Lang Documentation/Morphology/Syntax/Semantics: Haiman
Editor for this issue: Danniella Hornby
New! Visit LL's Multitree project for over 1000 trees dynamically generated from scholarly hypotheses about language relationships: http://multitree.linguistlist.org/
Links to the websites of all LINGUIST's supporting publishers are available at the end of this issue.
Author: John Haiman
Electronic: ISBN: 9789027285027 Pages: Price: Europe EURO 115.00
Electronic: ISBN: 9789027285027 Pages: Price: U.S. $ 173.00
Hardback: ISBN: 9789027238160 Pages: Price: U.K. £ 115.00
Hardback: ISBN: 9789027238160 Pages: Price: U.S. $ 173.00
Hardback: ISBN: 9789027238160 Pages: Price: Europe EURO 121.90
Cambodian is in many respects a typical Southeast Asian language, whose syntax at least on first acquaintance seems to approximate that of any SVO pidgin. On closer acquaintance, however, because of the richness of its idioms, the language seems to be a forbiddingly alien form of "Desesperanto" - a language of which one can read a page and understand every word individually, and have no inkling of what the page was all about. Like many of the languages of its genetic (Austroasiatic) family, its basic root vocabulary seems to consist largely of sesquisyllabic or iambic words, although there are an enormous number of unassimilated borrowings from Indic languages (which seem to play the same role in Cambodian that Latinate borrowings do in English). Morphologically, Cambodian has a fairly elaborate system of derivational affixes, and it is possible that the genesis of many of the most common of these affixes is related to (and undoes) the constant reduction of unstressed initial syllables in sesquisyllabic words. Again like many of the languages of Southeast Asia, Cambodian exhibits in its lexicon a penchant for symmetrical decorative compounding, a phenomenon which is so marginally attested in Western languages that the phenomenon has received little attention in the typological literature. The present book is the first reference grammar of Cambodian in any language since 1966, and the first to appear in English.