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Na Vosa Vaka Viti.

Discuss interesting facts about the history, vocabulary, and grammar of the languages of Fiji.

Members: 69
Latest Activity: Jun 9, 2018

Webpage of Dr. Raúl Aranovich, department of linguistics, UC Davis

Discussion Forum

How do you say "not" in Fijian? 4 Replies

I was intrigued by the comment that Fijian has many ways of saying "no", so I compiled some examples (from Milner's grammar). Can anyone add more forms or words meaning "no" to this list?1) SEGAThis…Continue

Started by Raul Aranovich. Last reply by Andy Ann Jan 20, 2014.

alphabets in fijian language 1 Reply

im just curious to know , how many alphabets does the fijian language have?Continue

Started by Emilee Naulumatua. Last reply by Raul Aranovich Dec 13, 2013.

What "language type" does Fijian approximate?

In my research on Fijian, one of the topics that comes up is the language type that characterizes the language. Traditionally, linguists classify the world's languages into four types. A) Analytic:…Continue

Started by Raul Aranovich Jan 13, 2012.

How Do You Say, "there is" in Fijian? 10 Replies

As I study the language of Fiji, I am stunned by the many ways to say "there is". Milner gives some examples: E tu e dua na vuniniu mai SeruaE tiko koya e dua na tamataSa dua na waqa Schütz, in his…Continue

Started by Raul Aranovich. Last reply by BULA BEE Nov 10, 2011.

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Comment by Raul Aranovich on November 12, 2011 at 11:29am

@ ZoeY.Z: Thanks for the information about Lani Wendt-Young. I did not know her work, but I found her blog and I loved it. I will look for her books. I found out that she is Albert Wendt's niece! Some family... 

Comment by Raul Aranovich on November 8, 2011 at 11:44am
@ Elle & Sereana: Thanks for joining the group, and the reading suggestions. I searched for a book with the title "Na Vosa Vakaviti", but I could not find it. Can you try to remember the author? Anyway, I am posting a list of books about Fijian I have found, hope people addmore references to it.
Comment by Raul Aranovich on November 8, 2011 at 11:42am
As a linguist, I was trained to do analysis and comparisons of word forms and phrases. I can do this to the best of my abilities in Fijian with the sources I have, but nothing compares to the intuitions of a native speaker. Of course, one does not have intuitions about the internal structure of words and phrases! But a native speaker has an intimate feel for the meanings, nouances, and usages of words in his or her language. I wish there were more native Fijians trained in linguistics!
Comment by Elle Smith on November 6, 2011 at 7:27pm

Bula Dr. Raul, Fijian is a very interesting language, it's easy to learn and it's fun to speak it.  I grew up with a little book printed back in 1941, called 'na vosa vakaviti' even though it was written by an European man, who also studied the Fijian language and published his studies..... To this day I still pick up that book and read it, to refresh some of my Fijians.........since lived here in Melbourne most of my life...........Here comes the modern fijian language I'm use to, how i speak to all my friends: 'Vinaka vakalevu for creating an interesting Discussion...........E bini tu na i vola ni Viti you can read, you can improvetaka kina nomu Fijian........Good luck to yah, au sa loloma sara tu yani

Comment by Dakei on November 6, 2011 at 1:21pm
Thanks Doctor. THat cleared alot.
Comment by Raul Aranovich on November 5, 2011 at 11:47am

@ Sereana: I am not fluent in FIjian, but I will try to translate your sentence as an "exercise" ;^). 

I will look for the book you mention. I was actually very interested in finding Fijian literature when I visited the islands a few years ago. I found Sons for the Return Home, by Albert Wendt. It is actually a Samoan novel: a love story about an expatriate Samoan boy and a 'Vavalagi' girl, but it is one of the best known novels by a native of the South Pacific. I would like to have more titles like these to read! 

Comment by Raul Aranovich on November 5, 2011 at 11:42am
@Dakei: Did you find out the translation? ANy particular reason you are interested in that word?
Comment by Raul Aranovich on November 5, 2011 at 11:40am
@ Sereana: Thanks for the list of pronouns. The existence of a "trial" form (i.e. a form for three people, different from a dual or a plural) is, as I understand it, very rare among the world's languages. Combina that with difference between inclusive and exclusive pronouns, and you have a very large inventory of pronominal forms in Fijian!
Comment by Raul Aranovich on November 5, 2011 at 11:29am

Hello, friends. I am glad to see there is interest in this group, I will try to answer some of the comments here.

@ Sereana: The linguitis diversity of Fiji is quite amazing. Probably the best work on that is Paul Geraghty's book The History of the Fijian Languages (Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 1983). I know there is amjor divide between Eastern and Western Fijian, and that Lauan is a bit different still. I would like to find out more about your dialect!

I do have a Fijian dictionary, which I purchased at the USP in 2006 (during a fieldwork visit). Its is Capell's dictionary. Are there any others? 

Comment by Dakei on November 4, 2011 at 1:21pm
What is Fijian for parallel?
 
 
 

Discussion Forum

How do you say "not" in Fijian? 4 Replies

Started by Raul Aranovich. Last reply by Andy Ann Jan 20, 2014.

alphabets in fijian language 1 Reply

Started by Emilee Naulumatua. Last reply by Raul Aranovich Dec 13, 2013.

What "language type" does Fijian approximate?

Started by Raul Aranovich Jan 13, 2012.

How Do You Say, "there is" in Fijian? 10 Replies

Started by Raul Aranovich. Last reply by BULA BEE Nov 10, 2011.

Books about Fijian (grammars, dictionaries, studies) 1 Reply

Started by Raul Aranovich. Last reply by BULA BEE Nov 10, 2011.

How do you say "parallel" in Fijian? 1 Reply

Started by Raul Aranovich. Last reply by Sivo Nov 7, 2011.

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