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Disagreement of feminine gender: historical perspectives

Toyota, Junichi LU (2012) In Text & Talk: an interdisciplinary journal of language, discourse & communication studies2006-01-01+01:00 32(1). p.63-82
Abstract
In this paper a particular case of grammatical gender agreement system is discussed, concerning the referent of young females or small children. These referents are grammatically treated as neuter nouns, disregarding their biological sex. This is termed gender disagreement. It is argued here that this is due to the older classification of nouns based on active and inactive distinction, stemming from the active alignment. What decides the distinction is the ability to reproduce, which was once a characteristic of active nouns. This criterion has not been given much attention in analyzing modern languages, but it has been very persistent in spite of various sociocultural factors that forced changes in other parts of grammar Thus, it can be... (More)
In this paper a particular case of grammatical gender agreement system is discussed, concerning the referent of young females or small children. These referents are grammatically treated as neuter nouns, disregarding their biological sex. This is termed gender disagreement. It is argued here that this is due to the older classification of nouns based on active and inactive distinction, stemming from the active alignment. What decides the distinction is the ability to reproduce, which was once a characteristic of active nouns. This criterion has not been given much attention in analyzing modern languages, but it has been very persistent in spite of various sociocultural factors that forced changes in other parts of grammar Thus, it can be claimed that gender disagreement is a result of a shift of gender agreement criteria and persistency of a specific criterion, i.e., the ability to reproduce proves to be still an important criterion in gender agreement system in modern languages. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
feminine, neuter, gender, agreement, active alignment, persistency
in
Text & Talk: an interdisciplinary journal of language, discourse & communication studies2006-01-01+01:00
volume
32
issue
1
pages
63 - 82
publisher
De Gruyter
external identifiers
  • wos:000300742600004
  • scopus:84856944394
ISSN
1860-7349
DOI
10.1515/text-2012-0004
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
6229b86d-6823-49c7-96b9-5d6a7a961229 (old id 538547)
date added to LUP
2007-09-26 15:21:42
date last changed
2017-01-01 06:35:42
@article{6229b86d-6823-49c7-96b9-5d6a7a961229,
  abstract     = {In this paper a particular case of grammatical gender agreement system is discussed, concerning the referent of young females or small children. These referents are grammatically treated as neuter nouns, disregarding their biological sex. This is termed gender disagreement. It is argued here that this is due to the older classification of nouns based on active and inactive distinction, stemming from the active alignment. What decides the distinction is the ability to reproduce, which was once a characteristic of active nouns. This criterion has not been given much attention in analyzing modern languages, but it has been very persistent in spite of various sociocultural factors that forced changes in other parts of grammar Thus, it can be claimed that gender disagreement is a result of a shift of gender agreement criteria and persistency of a specific criterion, i.e., the ability to reproduce proves to be still an important criterion in gender agreement system in modern languages.},
  author       = {Toyota, Junichi},
  issn         = {1860-7349},
  keyword      = {feminine,neuter,gender,agreement,active alignment,persistency},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {1},
  pages        = {63--82},
  publisher    = {De Gruyter},
  series       = {	Text & Talk: an interdisciplinary journal of language, discourse & communication studies2006-01-01+01:00},
  title        = {Disagreement of feminine gender: historical perspectives},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1515/text-2012-0004},
  volume       = {32},
  year         = {2012},
}