Stratal Phonology
Ricardo Bermudez-Otero
November 2017

The purpose of this paper is threefold: to survey current work in Stratal Phonology, to respond to recent arguments against cyclic phonological derivations, and to explore the morphological implications of the theory. Section 2 lays out the basic principles of Stratal Phonology: cyclicity and stratification. These make major empirical predictions, including Cyclic Containment, the Russian Doll Theorem, and Chung’s Generalization. The exposition highlights the fact that Stratal Phonology differs from other cyclic frameworks, such as Cophonology Theory, in positing relatively fewer cycles. Recent proposals are reviewed which look to independent facts in an effort to derive long-standing generalizations about cyclic domain structures: notably, the noncyclic status of roots and the recursiveness of stem-level domains. Section 3 addresses the contest between cyclicity and output-output correspondence, focusing on Steriade’s (1999) claim that English dual-level affixes like _-able_ challenge Cyclic Containment. I argue that, whilst Steriade’s argument draws force from important empirical facts, containment-compliant analyses centred on lexical acquisition not only describe the phenomena accurately, but also generate correct empirical predictions that are not matched by accounts relying on output-output correspondence. Section 4 assesses Stratal Phonology by evaluating the plausibility of its implications for morphology. I show, first, that the theory can derive the relative ordering of phonological strata without recourse to the Affix Ordering Generalization, and that it can handle bracketing paradoxes without recourse to rebracketing operations. At the same time, Stratal Phonology presupposes that morphology and phonology are distinct grammatical modules, and for this reason it favours concatenativist approaches to putative instances of process morphology, in line with Generalized Nonlinear Affixation.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/003118
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: In S.J. Hannahs & Anna R. K. Bosch (eds.), 2018, The Routledge handbook of phonological theory, 100-134. Abingdon: Routledge.
keywords: affix order, bracketing paradox, cophonology theory, cyclicity, dual-level affix, english, german, indonesian, interfaces of phonology, lexical conservatism, lexical phonology and morphology, modularity, nonconcatenative exponence, opacity, output-output correspondence, stratal optimality theory, stratification, morphology, phonology
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