Situation types in complementation: Oromo attitude predication

Shannon Bryant, Diti Bhadra


Though languages show rich variation in the clausal embedding strategies employed in attitude reports, most mainstream formal semantic theories of attitudes assume that the clausal complement of an attitude verb contributes at least a proposition to the semantics. The goal of this paper is to contribute to the growing cross-linguistic perspective of attitudes by providing semantic analyses for the two embedding strategies found with attitude verbs in Oromo (Cushitic): verbal nominalization, and embedding under akka 'as'. We argue that Oromo exemplifies a system in which non-speech attitudes uniformly embed situations rather than propositions, thereby expanding the empirical landscape of attitude reports in two ways: (i) situations and propositions are both ontological primitives used by languages in the construction of attitude reports, and (ii) attitude verbs in languages like Oromo do the semantic heavy lifting, contributing the "proposition" to propositional attitudes.

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