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Title: Malua Bay: a Description of the Malua Bay Language (Malekula, Vanuatu)
Authors: Wessels, Kanauhea Janion
Keywords: Austronesian Languages
Central-Eastern Malayo-Polynesian Languages
Malua Bay - Grammar
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: The University of Waikato
Abstract: Malua Bay: A description of the Malua Bay language (Malekula, Vanuatu) is a synchronic study of the Malua Bay language variety spoken in the village of Malua Bay, in Northwest Malekula, Vanuatu. The data for this project was collected in the village of Malua Bay over the course of two field trips in 2012 and 2013. This study also provides an account of Traditional Ecological Knowledge [TEK] in Malua Bay with relevance to children, and the implementation of TEK into Early Childhood Education [ECE] through the medium of vernacular language. The linguistic account provides a description of the phonological system of the language, with bilabial and palatal glides and complex pre-nasalised segments, where the complex pre-nasalised segments contrast with plain segments. The language also contains a six-vowel distinction. The basic syllable shape (C)V(C) is maintained in the language, and re-syllabification can occur through complex changes including segment deletion. The nominal system displays a semantic distinction between alienable/inalienable possession, which is commonly found in Oceanic languages. Verbal morphology in Malua Bay exhibits mood-prominence, where verbal predicates are marked for either realis or irrealis mood. Further aspectual meaning is specified through extra verbal morphology. Negation is marked discontinuously in Malua Bay with a verbal prefix and a post-verbal negative particle. An accusative system is displayed where intransitive and transitive subjects are treated in the same way, while transitive objetcs are marked separately.
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