Zhen Lin wrote:
What kind of valency-decreasing operation does a tripartite language use? It must essentially be the same as an antipassive.
It could just as well be either, couldn't it? You could either delete the agent or the patient - whatever is left takes the intransitive case... so it might have passives and antipassives.
Not speaking in particular of tripartite languages, but:
It takes more than "Agent deletion" to form a Passive; if that's all that happens, that's called a "Deagentive Voice" instead of a "Passive Voice". Passive Voice requires that there also be "Patient promotion". In an Accusative/Nominative language, that would mean that the Patient takes the Nominative case in the Passive voice.
It takes more than "Patient deletion" to form an Anti-Passive; if that's all that happens, that's called a "Depatientive Voice" instead of an "Anti-Passive Voice". Anti-Passive Voice requires that there also be "Agent promotion". In an Ergative/Absolutive language, that would mean that the Agent takes the Absolutive case in the Anti-Passive voice.
I wonder, like you, what valency-decreasing transformations are called in Tripartite languages, and how they work. I would imagine they could have both Passive and Anti-Passive. In a Tripartite language, as you know, a prototypical Transitive clause would have its Agent in an Ergative Case while its Patient would be in an Accusative Case. Both would be in different Cases from the single argument of a prototypical Intransitive clause, which would be in a Case we could call Nominative/Absolutive.
If one could delete the Agent but leave the Patient in the Accusative Case, I expect that would be called Deagentive Voice; but if one could delete the Agent and "promote" the Patient to the Nominative/Absolutive Case, I expect that would be called Passive Voice.
If one could delete the Patient but leave the Agent in the Ergative Case, I expect that would be called Depatientive Voice; but if one could delete the Patient and "promote" the Agent to the Nominative/Absolutive Case, I expect that would be called Anti-Passive Voice.
However I admit that's a guess on my part.
Does anyone know for sure?
Tom H.C. in MI