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Book: Harmonic Grammar and Harmonic Serialism

Chapter: 7. Positive Constraints and Finite Goodness in Harmonic Serialism

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.24945


This chapter explores the use of positively defined constraints, which assign rewards rather than violations. In parallel versions of Optimality Theory, positive constraints are untenable, because they fail to produce an optimum; however, within Harmonic Serialism, limitations on Gen mean that positively defined constraints are possible. While in many cases positive and negative constraints are functionally equivalent, this chapter argues that positive constraints provide superior empirical coverage in the domain of harmony processes.

Chapter Contributors

  • Wendell Kimper ( - wkimper) 'University of California, Santa Cruz'