Andrej L. Malchukov and Andrew Spencer

in The Oxford Handbook of Case

Published in print November 2008 | ISBN: 9780199206476
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Linguistics



The notion of ‘case’ has played an important role in thinking about grammar since the days of Pāṇini and Aristotle. Nonetheless, the concept of case and its relation to grammatical relations, meaning, and morphological form remains elusive and controversial. This book brings together in synopsis form, recent work on the problems of case, focusing on as many relevant aspects as possible. It features contributions by scholars from a variety of different backgrounds and theoretical persuasions to summarise the way that the notion of case figures in current grammatical theory, and how it relates to other aspects of morphology, syntax, and semantics. The book also contains articles on the types of case systems that languages exhibit and the way that case paradigms are structured, the way case systems develop and decay over time, and the kinds of functions and meanings that are expressed by case systems. In addition, it offers the reader a variety of articles relating the notion of case to other grammatical phenomena such as transitivity, the alignment of grammatical relations, and so on.

Keywords: case; syntax; grammatical relations; meaning; morphology; semantics; grammar; languages; transitivity

Article.  4656 words. 

Subjects: Linguistics ; Grammar, Syntax and Morphology

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