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  • Question about Afrikaans

    Hi,

    I'm a linguistics student and I'm looking into reflexivity in Afrikaans for a project and now I'm looking for native speakers of Afrikaans to give their opinion about a few sentences. It shouldn't take a lot of time and I would be really gratefull for your help.

    For the sentences below I would like to know if they can have a reflexive meaning (e.g. wether a sentence like 'Johan skeer hom' can mean 'Johan shaves himself'). It's not about wether one sentence is more formal or more regularly used, I would just like to know wich sentences are possible to a native speaker and aren't too weird.

    Wich of these sentences can be used to express that Johan overeats?
    1a. Johan ooreet.
    b. Johan ooreet hom.
    c. Johan ooreet homself.

    Wich of these sentences can be used to express that Johan behaves?
    2a. Johan gedra.
    b. Johan gedra hom.
    c. Johan gedra homself.

    3. Johan was hom.
    Can this sentence mean that Johan washes himself, or only that he washes someone else?

    4. Johan haat hom.
    Can this sentence mean that Johan hates himself, or only that he hates someone else?

    Wich of these sentences can be used to express that Johan feels himself slipping away?
    5a. Johan voel hom wegglip.
    b. Johan voel homself wegglip.

    Wich of these sentences can be used to express that Johan puts the book behind himself?
    6a. Johan sit die boek agter hom
    b. Johan sit die boek agter homself

    Wich of these sentences can be used to express that Johan sees a snake next to himself?
    7a. Johan sien 'n slang naas hom
    b. Johan sien 'n slang naas homself

  • #2
    Dear Foambatter,

    If you would want to help with this, I would still be very happy with your answers.
    Meanwhile I've learned that in the last sentence, it's better to say ' 'n slang langs hom' in stead of 'naas hom', so that should actually be changed.

    And I hope I'm not asking to much, but I actually have two additional questions (I'm just really curious)

    Would you ever use the word 'vir' in a sentence like
    'Ek sien vir hom'.

    and
    Would you use the word 'sig' in a sentence like
    'Die Liedjie sluit sig goed aan by die geleentheid'
    or
    'Die gedig leen sig tot verskeie interpretasies'

    I would be really gratefull for your help.

    Comment


    • #3
      thank you so much for taking the time to look at my (slightly weird) sentences and your elaborate anwers. This really helps.

      As for the sentences with 'sig'; I actually took these sentences from existing Afrikaans texts, but I already wasn't too sure that this would still be used nowadays. 'sig' is not meant in the sense of 'sight' here, but like the word 'itself' in English. So the sentence 'Die gedig leen sig tot verskeie interpretasies' is supposed to mean something like 'The poem lends itself to several interpretations', but I guess it's more usual to use 'hom' instead of 'sig' in cases like this. I've read that 'sig' might still be used in fixed expressions like 'dis 'n verhaal op sigself' and that it might be acceptable to some speakers of Afrikaans in sentences where 'sig' refers back to a neutral, non-living thing, like the sentence above, but that's dubious.

      thanks again and have a nice day

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