Understanding Allomorphy - Perspectives from Optimality Theory - Eulàlia Bonet

Understanding Allomorphy - Perspectives from Optimality Theory - Eulàlia Bonet

Obviative Prefix Allomorphy in Sahaptin and Nez Perce

Understanding Allomorphy - Perspectives from Optimality Theory - Eulàlia Bonet

Sharon Hargus [+-]
University of Washington
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Sharon Hargus is Professor of Linguistics at the University of Washington, specializes in phonetics, phonology, and morphology. She also studies languages of the Athabaskan family. Hargus and Beavert’s publications on Sahaptin include “Predictable vs. underlying vocalism in Yakima Sahaptin” (2002), “Word-initial clusters and minimality in Yakima Sahaptin” (2006), and “High-ranking Affix Faithfulness in Yakima Sahaptin” (2006).
Noel Rude [+-]
Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation
Noel Rude worked for many years as linguist for the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation. His many publications on Nez Perce and Sahaptin include (1988) “Ergative, Passive and Antipassive in Nez Perce”, “The Sahaptian inflectional suffix complex” (1996), and “Reconstructing Proto-Sahaptian Sounds” (2012). He is also co-author of a 2014 Sahaptin dictionary, Umatilla Dictionary.
Virginia Beavert [+-]
University of Oregon
Virginia Beavert, native speaker of Sahaptin, holds two doctorates (University of Washington, 2009; University of Oregon, 2012). She is the 2007 recipient of the Ken Hale Prize of the Society for the Study of Indigenous Languages of the Americas. Beavert and Hargus are co-authors of a 2009 Sahaptin dictionary, Ichishkíin Sínwit.

Description

Sahaptin and Nez Perce, the only two languages of the Sahaptian family, have a cognate obviative prefix with unusual allomorphy, which is argued to have been inherited from Proto-Sahaptian. Morpheme-specific allomorphy in each language is analyzed by positing allomorph sets, the choice among which is determined by phonological constraints. The analysis of Nez Perce relies on constraints on glottalized sonorants, whereas the analysis of Sahaptin makes use of sonority distance constraints and constraints against contiguous glottal stops. The article concludes with a proposed historical scenario for the development of the two languages, and discussion of the role of phonological constraints in the regulation of allomorphy.

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Citation

Hargus, Sharon; Rude, Noel; Beavert, Virginia . Obviative Prefix Allomorphy in Sahaptin and Nez Perce. Understanding Allomorphy - Perspectives from Optimality Theory. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 177-217 Jul 2015. ISBN 9781845532970. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=25218. Date accessed: 18 Feb 2018 doi: 10.1558/equinox.25218. Jul 2015

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