A Grammar of Patwin (Studies in the Native Languages of the Americas) (Paperback)

A Grammar of Patwin (Studies in the Native Languages of the Americas) By Lewis C. Lawyer Cover Image
Available in our Warehouse: Usually Ships in 3-8 Days


Published through the Recovering Languages and Literacies of the Americas initiative, supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

A Native American language formerly spoken in hundreds of communities in the interior of California, Patwin (also known as Wintun Tʼewe) is now spoken by a small but growing number of language revitalizationists and their students. A Grammar of Patwin brings together two hundred years of word lists, notebooks, audio recordings, and manuscripts from archives across the United States and synthesizes this scattered collection into the first published description of the Patwin language. This book shines a light on the knowledge of past speakers and researchers with a clear and well-organized description supported by ample archival evidence.

Lewis C. Lawyer addresses the full range of grammatical structure with chapters on phonetics, phonology, nominals, nominal modifiers, spatial terms, verbs, and clauses. At every level of grammatical structure there is notable variation between dialects, and this variation is painstakingly described. An introductory chapter situates the language geographically and historically and also gives a detailed account of previous work on the language and of the archival materials on which the study is based. Throughout the process of writing this book, Lawyer remained in contact with Patwin communities and individuals, who helped to ensure that the content is appropriate from a cultural perspective.

About the Author

Lewis C. Lawyer is an independent scholar and is the reference systems manager at Cambridge University Press & Assessment.

Praise For…

"This is an incredibly complex study of the grammatical structure of a language that has not been studied with this degree of detail before. It is rare to find any grammar book that pushes beyond repeating what previous grammar textbooks have already stated. Thus, specialists in rare languages, and in particular of Patwin will greatly benefit from having it in their libraries or borrowing it from an academic library to further their relevant research."—Anna Faktorovich, Pennsylvania Literary Journal

“This work is a model of the kind of scrupulous philological methodology that must be brought to bear on such projects. In addition to successfully adding Patwin to the canon of linguistically well-described California languages, it also serves as a model for the kind of methodology that will have to be employed on ever-increasing numbers of other Native North American languages that are no longer spoken, languages which are extensively documented in archival sources but not yet competently or comprehensively described.”—David J. Costa, author of The Miami-Illinois Language
Product Details
ISBN: 9781496230423
ISBN-10: 1496230426
Publisher: University of Nebraska Press
Publication Date: March 1st, 2022
Pages: 470
Language: English
Series: Studies in the Native Languages of the Americas