Belief, evidence, and interactional meaning in Urama

Jason Brown, Tyler Peterson, Kimberley Craig

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In Urama, there are two clause-final particles, ka and ra, that encode a variety of both semantic and pragmatic meanings. While previous approaches have treated these particles as clause-type markers or evidential morphemes, this paper argues that one of these particles, ka, has another previously undocumented function in conversation: to mark speaker-knowledge and what the speaker assumes the addressee to know. We term these interactional uses of ka and ra. Functionally, the interactional use of ka follows from its clause-typing and speech act properties. Theoretically, Urama represents a language that has a grammatical strategy for tracking information in the Common Ground, which is close in spirit to evidentiality and clause-typing, but qualitatively different.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)432-448
Number of pages17
JournalOceanic Linguistics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 2016
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


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