Shannon Rodríguez completes first QP!

Shannon Rodríguez (PhD, Linguistics) successfully completed/defended her first qualifying paper on Tuesday, August 29th. Her paper, entitled "Transitive andar: an emerging verb of alienable possession", discusses the transitive use of andar in varieties of Latin American Spanish, as in Es el maje que, aunque ande ropa de marca, galán se le mira, al desnudo, lo maje. (Honduras, Corpus del Español). Her committee (including Dr. Margaret Renwick and Dr. Paula Mellom) and I were  impressed with Shannon's work. If you happen to be in Lubbock, TX at the end of October, please check out Shannon's presentation on transitive andar at the 2017 Hispanic Linguistics Symposium. Congrats, Shannon, and good luck!

This study aims to explain the transitive use of andar in Central American dialects of Spanish (Lipski 2008) through the lens of a usage-based approach to gramaticalization (Bybee 2008, 2011) that works in hand with a variationist analysis (Torres Cacoullos 2011). Hernández (2002) notes that this marked use of andar (‘to walk’), normally an intransitive verb, as a transitive verb used to mean ‘to carry on one’s person’, (e.g. ¿Andas dinero para el taxi? ‘Do you have money for the taxi’) is a feature that is often lost by Salvadorans in contact with Mexican Spanish in the United States due to accommodation. The case in question (i.e. transitive andar or andar + NP) has not been described in terms of grammaticalization. Therefore, I trace the development of andar from its earliest uses as an intransitive verb taken from the Latin Vulgar ambulāre, to the beginnings of the transitive use in 12th Century Spain, to the present-day presence of a transitive andar as an emergent verb of possession. This transitivity is only compatible with a select group of semantic features in the noun complements, namely [+alienable possession]. Interestingly, transitive andar does not only occur with non-abstract noun complements, or even those that are strictly alienable. Using data gathered from the Corpus del Español (CdE, Davies 2002-), the results of a generalized linear mixed-effects model revealed that transitive andar is in competition with intransitive andar, only in the inner four Central American dialects, namely El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Honduras, where the vestige form is gaining ground. The results of a Chi-square test showed that andar is not in competition with a prevalent, same-sense intransitive verb like llevar, pointing to the intermediate status of andar’s grammaticalization. However, there is a need to modify Hernández’s meaning from ‘to carry on one’s person’ to ‘to carry or have something of relative alienable possession’ so as to include the possibility for ambiguously alienable/inalienable nouns and abstract nouns.