Linguistics 5 Notes for Midterm 1

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Keith Johnson

Lecture 2/3 9/6/2013 1:06:00 PM Lecture 3 The Origin of speech  Hockett proposed to shed light on origin of language by comparing communication systems of different animals on the basis of 13 “design features” These are supposed to be features that are shared by all languages of the world  to what extent do other communication systems have them? 1. Vocal Auditory Channel  Sign languages (like ASL) were not well known in 1960  Tried to teach chimpanzees to talk but then realized they couldn’t, much easier for them to learn sign language. 2. Broadcast transmission and directional reception  Emerges from physics of sound and use of light (or gestures) 3. Rapid fading (transitoriness)  Inherent in most signals transmitted by broadcast  Speech doesn’t naturally last/echo for a long time, allowing other messages 4. Interchangeability  The same person can be both the speaker and the listener  The hearer can repeat what the speaker says  Phoneticians believe that everyone has a unique voice o Physical differences in mouth etc.  Interchanging what counts i.e. the message and not the exact sound the other person is making 5. Total feedback  The speaker hears himself/herself “internalization”- thinking o Brain dims down hearing yourself as to not interfere with the planning  Consider gestural language, and attenuated auditory feedback 6. Specialization  Utterances are signals, not incidental results o Not a communication  Dog pants because its hot, not to communicate about being hot 7. Semanticity  Fixed association between words an meanings (situations of the world) 8. Arbitrariness  the size, shape, sound of word has nothing to do with its meaning o then we have onomatopoeia e.g. words for animal noises (different in each cultures/languages) 9. Discreteness  elementary signaling units are not on a continuous scale 10. Displacement  can talk about things that aren’t present in the moment  do bees discuss last week’s best spot for nectar?  A property of thought rather than language? 11. Productivity  say things that have never been said before, and yet still be understood  extend existing set of symbols and combinations of symbols to construct new unique messages  one mechanism for this may be recursion – to embed one clause within another or iterate a structure. 12. Traditional transmission  Language emerges from culture not from the world  Therefore, must be learned and maybe must be taught 13. Quality of patterning  basic signaling elements (sounds) are reusable  patterning- sounds mean nothing in themselves, are combined to form meanings  Duality means that similar sounding words don’t have to have similar meanings Evolution of language - some design features of language seen in primates  displacement  productivity  quality of patterning Hockett: Blending may have given rise to duality e.g. AB=food CD=danger and a way to say them both evolved. Displacement: members of a species who can displace calling “danger” in dangerous situations can have a survival advantage. Lecture 4-6 9/6/2013 1:06:00 PM Lecture 4 Words and their parts: Lexicon and Morphology  What it means to know a word o The word’s sounds and sequencing of these sounds o Word’s meanings o Word’s category, how to use it in a sentence o How it can be changed into related words in the grammatical system e.g. cat to cats (syntactic, grammatical structure   All of this information is stored in our lexicon. The mental lexicon is what a person knows about a language.  Identifying lexical categories o Look for patterns in form (dog/dogs, coats/coats) – when a word can take a plural ending indicates it’s a noun. Words that can consider tense is a verb o Look for patterns in how words are used in phrases (nouns can be preceded by the) o Look at the meaning of the word (nouns refer to people, places, things) Lexical categories Verbs  Transitive- requires connection between two nouns “she told…”  Intransitive- she “laughed” can be used by itself Adjectives Nouns  Singular  Plural Pronouns  Personal- he, she, me etc.  Interrogative- words at beginning of questions e.g. who, what  Relative- used to introduce sub-clauses in sentences e.g. the boy that went to the store  Indefinite- somebody, anybody (unspecific about who is referred)  Demonstrative- this one, that one etc. referring to something in context Determiners  Definite vs. indefinite articles- the cat vs. a cat  Demonstratives  Possessives- my cat, his cat- belonging  Interrogatives- which cat Adverbs  Words that modify words that changes its meaning a little –ly is added on Conjunctions  Coordinating- tie together equal phrases  Sub-ordinary- ordering Prepositions/postpositions  From the cat/the cat from…  Lexical categories do not work the same in all languages Morphemes  smallest unit of meaning (e.g. man, desk, house)  Can have grammatical and lexical meaning Not the same as syllable  River and gorilla are multisyllabic but monomorphemic  Kissed and dogs are monosyllabic but have more than one morpheme Lecture 5  Free morphemes- can stand alone as words and appear by itself e.g. car, look, orange  Bound morphemes- can function only as part of another word e.g. (look)ed, (car)s, (construct)ion  Derivational morphemes o Change the lexical category  Noun +”ful” = Adjective  Doubt +ful = doubtful o Change the central meaning  Align/realign, fair/unfair  Inflectional morphemes o Do not change lexical category or central meaning Morphemes: Ordered in sequence  Affixes o Suffixes; follow the stem- girls, commitment o Prefixes; untrue, disappear, repaint  Infixes break up another morpheme o E.g. in Tagalog- gulay (greenish vegetables), ginulay (greenish blue) Morphemes: Discontinuous  Circumfixes o Morphemes that occur in two parts one on either side of the stem  Interweaving morphemes o E.g. Arabic Morphemes: Merged or Layered  Portmanteau words- smog (from smoke and flog)  Morphemes layered within words o Control (verb) o Controllable (adj) o Uncontrollable (adj) o Uncontrollably (adv) Creating new words Nouns, adjectives, and verbs are called open classes  New words may be added to these categories Prepositions, pronouns, and determiners are closed classes  New words are seldom added in these categories - Principal ways of extending a language’s vocabulary  form from existing words and word parts  “borrow” from another language  Make up, create from scratch How to derive new words  Affixes: adding morphemes to a word e.g. blogger, bioterrorism, nanosecond  Reduplication: repeating a morpheme or part of a morpheme  Compounds: putting two words together to make a new word e.g. upfront, dust bunny o Different stresses/emphasis on a word to connote that it is now a compound. E.g. black board vs. blackboard  Shortenings: feds, info o Acronyms- the initial letters of the words are pronounced as a new word. NASA, NATO o Initialisms- the initial letters of the words are pronounced as a series of letters. DNA, GPA o Blends- combining first sounds of one word with the final sounds of another e.g. smog, motel  Back formation: take some word and act as if it was produced by adding an affix. pronunciate from pronunciation, edit from editor  Conversion/functional shift: moving words from one category to another without changes in form e.g. update (verb)/update (noun)  Semantic shift: shifting the reference, e.g. mouse (animal) vs. mouse (computer tool)  Borrowing: taking words from other languages o Usually nouns o Borrowed words conform to the pronunciation and grammar of the borrowing language  E.g. paparazzi, judo, glitch, wok  Inventing: making words up from scratch o Granola, zap, quark, nerd Morphological systems  Isolating morphology (e.g. Chinese) o Each word tends to be a single morpheme  Agglutinating morphology (e.g. Turkish) o Words can have several prefixes and suffixes that can be segmented into parts Lecture 6 Neutral vs. Non-neutral derivational affixes  Chomsky (1970) “or nominalization” o Neutral affixes: non-, un-, -ment, -er, -ly, -ize, -ness o Non-neutral: in-, -ity, -al, -ic, -ation, -ify, -ous, -ive “Lexicalization” Neutral affixes  Germanic  Weak interaction with stem (doesn’t change it)  Strong boundary (#) Non-neutral affixes  Romance  Strong interaction  Weak boundary (+) Curious  curious#ness  curios+ity Productive  productive#ness  productive+ity Finite  non#finite  in+finite Non-neutral affixes changes where we stress the sound, changes pronunciation. Seems natural to suppose that non-neutral affixes belong closer to the stem than do neutral affixes Stem+non-neutral#neutral#inflection Are neutral and non-neutral affixes ordered?  Non-neutral in (closer to stem than) neutral o Mysteri+ous#ness  Neutral in non-neutral o Govern#ment+al Affix ordering-  Neutral in inflection o Walk#er#s  Inflection in neutral o Accord#ing#ly  Non-neutral in inflection o Quant+ifi#ed  Inflection in non-neutral (non-occurring?) o ***Laugh#s+ation  doesn’t exist  Neutral in compounding o Govern#ment office  Coumpounding in neutral o Skate board#er  Non-neutral in compounding o Satur+ation point  Compounding in non-neutral o Set theoret+ic  Inflection in compounding o Laugh#ing stock  Compounding in inflection Lecture 7-9 9/6/2013 1:06:00 PM Lecture 7  Sounds and spellings are not the same thing.  Single letter can represent multiple sounds (fox), multiple letters can represent one sound (cough)  Discrepancies come from diverse origins o Anglo-Saxon o Norman French o Dutch o Spelling reform Spelling system is a fixed representation of a changing language  English spoken differently in different regions   Words may be pronounced differently but spelled the same. Advantages of fixed spelling  We can read the same texts e.g. rules, law  make diverse dialects share something common so they can understand eachother.  Uniform across very diverse dialects Phonetics – study of speech sounds  Articulatory phonetics focuses on the human vocal apparatus and describes sounds in terms of their articulation in the vocal tract  Acoustic phonetics uses the tools of physics to study the nature of sound waves produced in human language  International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) – a system that uses a unique symbol to represent every sound in every language. Vocal Tract Air from the lungs passes through the vocal tract and is shaped by the mouth and nose. Describing consonants  Voicing; whether the vocal cords are vibrating or not (f vs. v)  Place of articulation; where the airstream is most obstructed (p vs. t vs. k)  Manner of articulation; particular way the airstream is obstructed (s vs. t) Consonants; sounds produced by partially or completely blocking air in its passage from the lungs through the vocal tract  Stops – formed when air is built up in the vocal tract and suddenly released through the mouth  Fricatives – air forced through a narrow opening at some point in the vocal tract  Affricates – air built up by complete closure of oral tract at some place of articulation, then released (something like a stop) and continued (like a fricative)  Approximates – produced by 2 articulators approaching one another almost like fricatives but not coming close enough to produce friction  Nasals – pronounced by lowering the velum, allowing the stream of air to pass out through the nasal cavity instead of through the oral cavity  Clicks, flaps, trills – clicks: stop consonants important for sound systems of some southern African languages o Flaps: high velocity short stop produced by tapping tongue against alveolar ridge o Trills: rapid series of flaps Vowels; produced by passing air through different shapes of the mouth, with different positions of tongue and of the lips, with air stream relatively unobstructed by narrow passages except at the glottis  Diphthongs – vowel sounds in which the tongue starts in once place and glides to another. o Loud, boy, ride  Tenseness: lax vowels are typically shorter and more centralized than tense vowels  Rounding: shape of lips  Length: how long vowel sound is held  Nasalization: air passes through nasal cavity  Tone: contrastive pitch Lecture 9 Peter Ladefoged; “Out of Chaos Comes Order” (1987)  Find a balance between o Articulatory effort o Auditory distinctiveness  Speaker sets the balance o Listener asks for clarification, resets balance  Balance point depends on context o Friends talking- fast and reduced o Public speaking- slower and more careful o Drill sergeant?  Familiarity reduction o With talker, also with words (common vs. rare words) When auditory distinctiveness wins  When distinctiveness is easy to reduce Speakers of every language have to use exactly the right vowels and consonant qualities, and intonations, and rhythms etc. on pain of being wrongly labeled if they do not. Bjorn Lindblom- vowel dispersion (magnetic repellence between vowels) - Language is a self-organizing institution Examples of self-organizing social institutions Lecture 10-12 9/6/2013 1:06:00 PM Lecture 10 Phonology  Systematic structuring of sounds in languages  Examines which phonetic distinctions are significant (functionally, contrastive or distinctive to differentiate one meaning from the other) enough to signal differences in meaning  The relationship between how sounds are pronounced and how they’re stored in the mind, and the way sounds are organized within words Continuous Speech signals  Individual phonetic features of one sound may carry over onto other preceding or subsequent sounds e.g. “twin”  Therefore “same sounds” can actually have subtly different pronunciations depending on context Phoneme = structural element in the sound system of a language Allophones = realizations of a single structural element in the sound system of a language- allophones do not create contrasts in meaning.  Native speakers hear allophones as the same sound. Complementary distribution = two sounds nei
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