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Syntax-Prosody in Optimality Theory

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Optimality Theory has become the dominant approach to studying phonology, including analyses of the mapping from syntactic structure to prosodic structure. However, when syntactic and prosodic structures are represented as trees, it is difficult, if not impossible, to systematically generate by hand all the possible prosodic parses that must be considered in an Optimality Theory investigation for any given syntactic input. Consequently, most existing syntax-prosody analyses are in this way incomplete, compromising their validity.

This volume presents a series of complete analyses of the syntax-prosody interface, thanks to their use of the Syntax-Prosody in Optimality Theory (SPOT) application. This JavaScript application, developed by the editors of this volume, automates candidate generation and constraint evaluation, making a rigorous Optimality Theory analysis of syntax-prosody possible. SPOT allows the user to test the typological predictions of the numerous proposed constraints on prosodic markedness and syntax-prosody mapping, so that researchers can make progress toward determining which formulations of the constraints should actually be part of the universal constraint set. A theme of the volume is comparing Selkirk’s Match Theory with the older Align Theory of syntax-prosody mapping, finding that both are needed, at least in some languages.

Published: Jun 30, 2023


Section Chapter Authors
Acknowledgements Jennifer Bellik, Junko Ito, Nick Kalivoda, Armin Mester
Chapter 1
Syntax-Prosody in Optimality Theory (SPOT) Jennifer Bellik, Junko Ito, Nick Kalivoda, Armin Mester
Part I: GEN Settings
2. Counting Tree Parses Edward Shingler, Jennifer Bellik
3. Branching Sensitivity, Prosodic Recursion and Mapping Constraints Max Tarlov
Part II: Match Theory
4. Overtly Headed XPs and ι-initial StrongStart in Irish Syntax-Prosody Mapping Nick Kalivoda
5. Constraining Subcategory-Sensitive MATCH Constraints Nicholas Van Handel, Dan Brodkin, Benjamin Eischens
6. Visibility Settings for Match Theory Nicholas Van Handel
Part III: Align Theory
7. Interactions of Matching, Alignment and Binarity in Japanese and Beyond Nick Kalivoda
8. Align-driven Clitic Movement in Chamorro Richard Bibbs
9. Revisiting Tone Sandhi Domains in Xiamen Chinese: MATCH vs ALIGN with Strict Layering Yaqing Cao, Richard Bibbs, Jennifer Bellik
Part IV: Prosodic Well-Formedness Constraints
10. Size Effects in Prosody: Branch-Counting, Leaf-Counting, and Uniformity Jennifer Bellik, Nicholas Van Handel
11. Stringency Hierarchies in Prosodic Sisterhood: STRONGSTART and EQUALSISTERS Jennifer Bellik
12. How to Use SPOT: A Tutorial Jennifer Bellik, Nick Kalivoda
End Matter
Index Jennifer Bellik, Junko Ito, Nick Kalivoda, Armin Mester