The gender system of Laal

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This paper describes the gender system of Laal, a language isolate of Chad. Laal has a strictly semantic, partly sex-based gender system making use of three semantic features: [±human], [masculine/feminine], and [±abstract], defining four genders: human masculine, human feminine, neuter, and abstract. Gender is covert on nouns; it is marked only on agreeing pronouns and functional words. The morphological marking and structure of the gender system is different in pronouns and functional words. Seven agreement classes are defined by various conflations of gender and number categories in both pronominal forms and functional words.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)241-262
Number of pages22
JournalSTUF - Sprachtypologie und Universalienforschung
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


  • abstract gender
  • agreement
  • gender
  • human/non-human
  • sex-based gender


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