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Light Warlpiri

Posted: 2014-07-21, 4:32
by vijayjohn
Light Warlpiri is (arguably) a mixed language spoken in Lajamanu, Australia, formed from Warlpiri (a Pama-Nyungan language), Australian Kriol/Aboriginal English, and Australian English. It is spoken within the Warlpiri community of Lajamanu, where it is considered a variety of Warlpiri and apparently developed out of code-switching patterns within the Warlpiri-speaking community. It was in the news not too long ago, where journalists seemed to suggest it was a language that had just been discovered, even though the first paper on it came out at least nine years ago. I found the earliest paper on it that I know of, namely this one: http://languages-linguistics.unimelb.ed ... rlpiri.pdf. I expect that paper to be my starting point for learning Light Warlpiri.

There are not too many differences between Lajamanu Warlpiri and the variety/ies of Warlpiri documented in linguistic literature. However, in the latter varieties, the ergative markers -ngki and -ngku and locative marker -ngka occur only on disyllabic word stems, whereas longer stems instead take -rli, -rlu, and -rla respectively. In Lajamanu Warlpiri, the forms beginning with "ng" occur on longer stems, too. Also, there are phonotactic differences; for example, Warlpiri normally does not allow word-final consonants, but Lajamanu Warlpiri drops word-final -u and -i in some words, and Light Warlpiri follows the same phonotactic rules as Lajamanu Warlpiri with words that come from Warlpiri.

Light Warlpiri words are sometimes from Kriol, e.g. bugi 'wash' ("bogey" in Kriol; this term comes from another Pama-Nyungan language and was commonly used in Australian English in the 50s, too) and sometimes from English with some Warlpiri or Kriol phonology, e.g. uuju 'horse' ([s] often changes to [tʃ] in Kriol, as I'd already learned when I started to study it).

Re: Light Warlpiri

Posted: 2014-08-26, 8:29
by vijayjohn
Syllables are often deleted from possessive forms in Lajamanu Warlpiri (and Light Warlpiri). For example, the pronoun nyuntu-nyangu (you-POSS) becomes nyun-nyang, and the possessive case marker -kurlangu becomes -kang. The determiner yinya 'there' becomes inya. The velar-initial ergative marker may have any of the forms -ngku, -ngu, or -ng (what about -ngki or -ngi?). Malju 'young man' becomes malyu, and wirlinyi 'hunting' becomes wirlinyji. In some words (and in baby talk, apparently), rhotics become semivowels, e.g. the diminutive suffix -pardu > -pawu and the inchoative verbal suffix -jarrimi > -jayimi.

And finally, here's a story in Light Warlpiri told by an 8-year-old child from Lajamanu and recorded by Carmel O'Shannessy, who's the author of that paper! Cool, huh? :D There are a couple of words of Warlpiri I've learned just from this video, namely jarntu 'dog' and kuuku 'monster':

Re: Light Warlpiri

Posted: 2014-11-29, 2:34
by vijayjohn
Unlike English, Warlpiri is ergative-absolutive (although pronouns follow nominative-accusative alignment), and word order is free; I already knew all that. What I didn't know is that it "has a cross-referencing pronominal system, hosted by an auxiliary base" (from p. 36 of O'Shannessy); this is also the first paper where I've seen the author admit that there are pragmatically preferred word orders in Warlpiri. Light Warlpiri uses SVO word order like English and Kriol (or at least this is the unmarked word order in Light Warlpiri), but subject and object NPs can be dropped (as in Warlpiri), and ergative case-marking occurs though usually only on NPs that come from Warlpiri.

It looks like the Light Warlpiri verbal system is mostly like that of Kriol. However, the suffix -bat is not nearly as common in Light Warlpiri as in Kriol, and there are some Warlpiri verb roots, all of which take the Kriol transitive suffix -im, which is reduced to -m (and which can change verb valency in Light Warlpiri).

Anyway, here's a new word that occurs both in that video I posted last time and in this paper: karnta-pawu 'girl'.

Re: Light Warlpiri

Posted: 2015-08-25, 3:55
by vijayjohn
I think I'm ready to start learning some new words and review old ones. Earlier today, I learned how to say 'water' in Warlpiri as well. I'm not going to mention it in this lesson without spoiler tags surrounding it because I want to be able to quiz myself on it later, and if I write it without spoiler tags, I might cheat! :P One of these phrases includes an ergative marker, but I'm not going to try to memorize all the possible forms of the ergative marker just yet. There are too many to remember, and I've only seen an example of like one or two so far:

horse = uuju
dog = jarntu
monster = kuuku
water = ngapa
girl = karnta-pawu
diminutive marker = -pawu
The horse is having water. = Uujung im habum ngapa.
The girl is having water. = Karnta-pawung im habum ngapa.

And whoa, that's pretty cool that -im can change verb valency in Light Warlpiri! :shock: I don't know why I didn't really think about that before! :lol: And the few Warlpiri verb roots that are present in Light Warlpiri are in a verb class in Warlpiri where the verbs show regressive vowel harmony, but in Light Warlpiri, this is optional. That's pretty cool, too! :D

...Omg there are two entire sections in this paper just about auxiliaries! I didn't realize auxiliaries were so important in Warlpiri. I think I better start looking at that next time I come around to this language.

Re: Light Warlpiri

Posted: 2016-08-07, 18:13
by vijayjohn
I guess this time, I'll just quickly note that -m in those last two Light Warlpiri sentences in my last post is an auxiliary from Australian Kriol but apparently used in a way that resembles Warlpiri auxiliaries rather than the way that Kriol auxiliaries are used. I'm not going to get into the nitty-gritty details about that yet; instead, I'll just point out the Warlpiri elements in sentence #2 and allow myself to quiz myself over that sentence in future. Ngurrju in Warlpiri means 'good', and -nyayirni means 'very'. I also want to note that the link for that paper has now changed to ... rlpiri.pdf.

good = ngurrju
very = -nyayirni
very good = ngurrjunyayirni
You did/were very good = Yum ngurrjunyayirni.

Re: Light Warlpiri

Posted: 2017-03-25, 17:48
by vijayjohn
Here are a few more sentences in Light Warlpiri: arra teikimat 'I'll take (it) out' (no Warlpiri morphology here!) nyampu ngana im jakimbat? 'this, who's throwing (it) around?' and jintakari irra katatim nail 'another one [person], he'll take a nail out'. Nyampu means 'this', inya means 'that', ngana means 'who', jinta means 'one', and -kari means other, so I guess jintakari means 'someone else' or something similar (maybe even just 'another one' as they say).

this = nyampu
that = inya
who = ngana
one = jinta
other = -kari
I'll take (it) out = Arra teikimat
This, who's throwing it around? = Nyampu ngana im jakimbat?
Another one, he'll take a nail out = Jintakari irra katatim nail

Re: Light Warlpiri

Posted: 2017-10-17, 4:25
by vijayjohn
Here are some more words in Light Warlpiri from the next two example sentences, along with those entire sentences and a sentence from the previous post! I've also included one phrase from the video I posted earlier:

I'll take (it) out. = Arra teikimat.
to pierce = panti
nonpast tense marker = -rni
past tense marker = -rnu
thorn = jilkarla
A thorn is piercing him or pierced him. = Jilkarlang im pantirnim.
towards the tree = watiyawana
A thorn(??) pierced him. = Im panturnum watiyang.

I'm going to try to make some silly mnemonics for some of these words because I keep forgetting even the ones I already posted! Okay, maybe this won't really work, but let's try it out anyway just in case: This is a Thai crab I say "yum" in French to: nyam-pu (because nyam means 'yum' in French and [puː] is 'crab' in Thai). 'This' is nyampu. Or alternatively, 'this' is crab in Malayalam and Thai combined: [ɲəɳɖɯpuː] -> nyampu! 'That' is nine in Greek: inya. Or it's just how the first letter in the word for 'this' (if it were written in Malayalam script) would be pronounced by Malayalees. :P (Ngana should be easy enough to remember because I remember it from that recording I posted! Same with watiya). Worry (ചിന്ത -> jinta) is one thing, but ending it (കഴി(യുന്നത്) -> -kari) is another. You get a thorn (jilkarla) if you 'throw away' (pronounced in Malayalam like karla-) the 'silent letter' (pronounced in Malayalam a bit like jil).

Re: Light Warlpiri

Posted: 2017-11-10, 21:39
by księżycowy
I've been meaning to ask, since I've started up an AAL myself again, how goes the Warlpiri (Light)?

Re: Light Warlpiri

Posted: 2018-04-23, 7:20
by vijayjohn
Very slow, but actually not that bad since I'm still working off this one paper with just a little bit of data in it! :P

All right. Time for a quick round of new vocab!

bird = jurlpu
tea = nalija
true = junga
two = jirrama
there = ngulanga
They're going to catch the bird. = Jurlpu derra catchim.
That bird might bite you. = Irra bite you dat jurlpu.
She's making tea. = Nalija im meikim.
Did you get a card? = Yum garrum card mayi?
Nuna will put them there. = Nunarra purrum ngulanga.
I'll hit both of you. = Arra hit you junga jirrama.
She might cry, that Apu. = Irra cry dat Apu.