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Is there a future for the Finnish comitative?

TitleIs there a future for the Finnish comitative?
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2011
AuthorsSirola-Belliard, M
EditorKittilä, S, Västi, K, Ylikoski, J
Book TitleCase, Animacy and Semantic Roles
Series TitleTypological Studies in Language
Series Volume99
PublisherJohn Benjamins Publishing Company
ISBN978 90 272 0680 0 (hardbound) 978 90 272 8481 5 (e-book)

This paper sets out to question the claims made in literature about the synonymy of the Finnish comitative case -ine and the construction with the postposition kanssa, suggesting that the former is giving way to the latter. A contemporary newspaper corpus shows that the comitative is still a productive case in Finnish and that the functional domains of the case and the postposition kanssa differ considerably: each of them has functions that the other does not have, and the distributions of their common functions are notably different. This shows that the comitative case and the postposition kanssa are not replaceable each with the other and thus, they are not synonymic.