By the same authors

A typological overview of Eegimaa (Jóola Banjal)

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Publication details

JournalStudies in African Linguistics
DateAccepted/In press - 7 Dec 2018
DatePublished (current) - 3 Jul 2019
Issue number1
Number of pages28
Pages (from-to)25-53
Original languageEnglish


This paper examines some of the most prominent properties of Eegimaa, a Jóola/Diola language spoken in the Basse‑Casamance (Southern Senegal). The phonological features examined include [ATR] vowel harmony, backness harmony, lenition, and Eegimaa’s typologically unusual geminate consonants. The paper focuses primarily on Eegimaa morphology. My analysis of the noun class system separates morphological classes from agreement classes (genders), as suggested in Aronoff (1994), and presents the most important principles of semantic categorization, including shape encoding. I also show that Eegimaa classifies nouns and verbs by the same overt linguistic means, namely, noun class prefixes. I argue that this overt classification of nouns and verbs reflects parallel semantic categorization of entities and events. Other prominent typological features include associative plural marking and nominal TAM marking with the inactualis suffix, which also expresses alienability contrasts.

    Research areas

  • noun class semantics, non‑finite verb classification, alienability, nominal tense, geminates, vowel harmony

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