The Case Against A-N Compounding in Akan

Appah, C. K. I. (2013). The case against A-N compounding in Akan. Journal of West African languages, 40 (1): 73-87.

15 Pages Posted: 15 Jan 2015

Date Written: 2013

Abstract

This article questions the status of Adjectives-Noun nominal compounding ([A- N]N) in Akan. Although the A-N compounding is postulated, no single study offers more than three good examples at any time. This is interesting because compounding is very productive in Akan. Again, in all the putative examples, the adjectives bear prefixes that they do not have elsewhere in the grammar, except when they modify plural nouns. I argue that the prefixes nominalize the adjectives which then must occur as the left-hand nominal modifiers in N-N compounds which are predominantly right-headed in Akan. Real adjective constituents of nominal compounds occur on the right. Thus, the morphological make-up and distribution of the constituents of such compounds suggest that they may be better analyzed as N-N compounds with nominalized adjectives as left-hand constituents. However, we may not rule out the existence of A-N compounding in Akan yet, hoping that proponents may succeed, somehow, to adduce real evidence to justify their postulation.

Keywords: Akan, Adjective-Noun compounds, Compounding, Headedness, Right-Headed, Noun-Noun compounds

Suggested Citation

Appah, Clement Kwamina Insaidoo, The Case Against A-N Compounding in Akan (2013). Appah, C. K. I. (2013). The case against A-N compounding in Akan. Journal of West African languages, 40 (1): 73-87.. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2550071 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2550071

Clement Kwamina Insaidoo Appah (Contact Author)

University of Ghana ( email )

Department of Linguistics
P.O. Box LG61
Accra
Ghana
+233247474745 (Phone)
247474745 (Fax)

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