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9 Mar 2011
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LECTURE 7 – March 8th, 2011
Linear vs. Non-linear phonology –
Linear phonology – consider string of segments
Sometimes, though, need to go further and look at multilayer structure – something above level
of string of sounds and segments – NONLINEAR PHONOLOGY
3 parts -Syllable theory – today’s topic
-Metrical theory – next week
-Autosegmental theory – next, next week
-These are the three components of non-linear phonology
Syllable structure
-Hierarchical structure – tree
-ONSET, rhyme, nucleus, coda
oBranched nucleus – diphthong
-Some phontotactic constraints can be accounted for better if consider syllables
oFor instance in English, no kn in initial position
oBut Scandinavian has it – pronounceable but not in English (But okay in Old
English – knife – but eventually, k is silent)
oNEED SYLLABLE STRUCTURE
oAlso, some phonological processes understood after considering syllable
structure
Ex. epenthesis
Occurs because syllabification demands it
Cannot be accounted for by linear phonology
Syllabic structure
-Example from English – to account for h in English – occur beginning of
syllable/word, followed by vowel or glide
oMust easier to explain this way rather than features of linear phonology
oANOTHER EXAMPLE
Koryak – schwas present in lower set of data, not above set
To explain schwa epenthesis, consider template of language
Which is CVC – maximum syllable – can be smaller than
CVC, but NEVER BIGGER
P cannot follow t – so put schwa between => [tep]
Syllable boundary between p and velar nasal
After p, get CCVC structure – cannot have two CCs in
sequence – so schwa epenthesis between velar nasal and l
The final VC is okay – smaller than template
-TEMPLATE IS MAXIMAL SYLLABLE PERMITTED
-MINIMAL – if minimal is CVC – then VC IS NOT PERMITTED
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-There are different views over template – whether suffixes or stem considered – SO
DIFFERENT APPROACHES EXIST
Onset not counted as syllable weight ****
EXAMPLE FROM SPANISH
-Under lying n becomes velar in some positions
oIn all cases, n becomes velar in coda – after V
oSo can concluden becomes velar in coda position”
oShow how much easier to consider syllable structure as opposed to linear
phonology
NB – what’s in the readings but not in the lecture – NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR
Syllable weight
-Number of segments that can be assigned in coda, nucleus, etc.
-Important to consider what and how many can go in each position – for stress, for
instance
-CV – LIGHT syllable
-CVV – long vowel – HEAVY syllable
-Anything bigger than CV is heavy syllable
Consider timing units
-Quantity- sensitive
oQuantity refers to LENGTH
-Quality – refers to segments, features
-Single [ae] – one because it is a short vowel
-When have long [ae] – OR GEMINITE consonants – have TWO X’s
oTo easily distinguish between what’s long and short
-Advantages – having a : to indicate length is not as clear as having two instances of
the verb
-X represents the timing slots
-Representation – without X – must have “:
oTo indicate whether you mean long or short vowel
-The X level is the quantity level
oQuality level (its features) are at the level below X level
If nucleus or rhyme is branching – LONG, HEAVY syllables indicated
N is part of R – if N is branching, R is branching too – so HEAVY syllable
Some languages do not have long vowels or dipthongs – so only have rhyme branching – no
nucleus branching
-LANGUAGE-specific
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Document Summary

Sometimes, though, need to go further and look at multilayer structure something above level of string of sounds and segments nonlinear phonology. These are the three components of non-linear phonology. Onset, rhyme, nucleus, coda: branched nucleus diphthong. Some phontotactic constraints can be accounted for better if consider syllables: for instance in english, no kn in initial position, but scandinavian has it pronounceable but not in english (but okay in old. English knife but eventually, k is silent: need syllable structure, also, some phonological processes understood after considering syllable structure.  cannot be accounted for by linear phonology. Example from english to account for h in english occur beginning of syllable/word, followed by vowel or glide: must easier to explain this way rather than features of linear phonology, another example.  koryak schwas present in lower set of data, not above set.  to explain schwa epenthesis, consider template of language: which is cvc maximum syllable can be smaller than.

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