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Phonological Argumentation

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This volume presents a series of original papers focusing on phonological argumentation, set within the framework of Optimality Theory. It contains two major sections: chapters about the evidence for and methodology used in discovering the bases of phonological theory, i.e., how constraints are formed and what sort of evidence is relevant in positing them; and case studies that focus on particular theoretical issues within Optimality Theory, usually through selected phenomena in one or more languages, arguing in favor of or against specific formal analyses.

A noteworthy detail of this book is that all of the contributors are connected with the program in phonology and phonetics at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, either as current professors or former graduate students. Consequently, all of them have been directly influenced by John McCarthy, one of the major proponents of Optimality Theory. This collection will therefore be of interest to anyone who seriously follows the field of Optimality Theory. The intended readership is primarily graduate students and those already holding an advanced degree in linguistics.

Published: Jan 1, 2010

Book Contributors


Section Chapter Authors
List of contributors Steve Parker
Foreword Elisabeth Selkirk
Introduction Steve Parker
Part I: Phonological argumentation and the bases of Optimality Theory
1 Grammar is both categorical and gradient Andries W. Coetzee
2 Phonological evidence Paul de Lacy
3 Underphonologization and modularity bias Elliott Moreton
4 Contrast, comparison sets, and the perceptual space Máire Ni Chiosáin, Jaye Padgett
5 Morpheme-specific phonology: Constraint indexation and inconsistency resolution Joe Pater
6 Source similarity in loanword adaptation: Correspondence Theory and the posited source-language representation Jennifer Smith
Part II: Case studies in phonological argumentation
7 Exploring recursivity, stringency, and gradience in the Pama-Nyungan stress continuum John Alderete
8 Acoustics of epenthetic vowels in Lebanese Arabic Maria Gouskova, Nancy Hall
9 The onset of the prosodic word Junko Ito, Armin Mester
10 Infixation as morpheme absorption Ania Łubowicz
11 Vowel length in Arabic verb stems Sam Rosenthall
End Matter
References Steve Parker
Author index Steve Parker
Index of constraints Steve Parker
Index of languages, linguistic families, and dialects Steve Parker
Subject index Steve Parker

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