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Decomposing necessity — The Hausa exclusive particle sai as a window into the building blocks of modal meaning

  • We discuss the modal uses of the Hausa exclusive particle sai (≈ only). We argue that the distribution of sai in modal environments provides evidence for the following claims on the composition of modal meaning that have been independently made in the literature: i) Future-oriented modality involves a prospective aspect operator that can be realized covertly in some languages (e.g. English, Kratzer 2012b) and overtly in others (e.g. Gitksan, Matthewson 2012, 2013). ii) Necessity interpretations arise from exhaustifying possibilities, i.e. an exhaustivity operator applying to existential modality (e.g. Kaufmann 2012 for the case of imperatives and Leffel 2012 for a relevant analysis of necessity meaning in Masalit). We show that future-oriented necessity in Hausa decomposes into EXH((PROSP)), with sai contributing exhaustivity.

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Author:Mira GrubicGND, Anne MuchaGND
Parent Title (Multiple languages):Proceedings of Sinn und Bedeutung 25
Publisher:University College London and Queen Mary University of London
Place of publication:London
Editor:Patrick Grosz, Luisa Martí, Hazel Pearson, Yasutada Sudo, Sarah Zobel
Document Type:Conference Proceeding
Year of first Publication:2021
Date of Publication (online):2023/06/19
Publishing Institution:Leibniz-Institut für Deutsche Sprache (IDS)
Tag:aspect; conditionals; exclusive particles; modal meaning; modality
GND Keyword:Aspekt <Linguistik>; Bedeutung; Hausa-Sprache; Konditional; Modalität <Linguistik>; Modalpartikel; Partikel
First Page:358
Last Page:375
DDC classes:400 Sprache / 400 Sprache, Linguistik
Open Access?:ja
Leibniz-Classification:Sprache, Linguistik
Program areas:G1: Beschreibung und Erschließung Grammatischen Wissens
Licence (English):License LogoCreative Commons - Attribution 4.0 International