Exceptional prosodification effects revisited in Gradient Harmonic Grammar
Brian Hsu
January 2018

In exceptional prosodification effects, individual lexical items pattern phonologically as if they occur in a prosodic structure that is inconsistent with the regular syntax-prosody mapping. These patterns have been analyzed as cases of prosodic prespecification (Inkelas 1989, Zec 2005), where morphemes subcategorize for a (non-default) prosodic representation. This paper argues that prespecification approaches should be reconsidered, and shows that such patterns are predicted to arise without morpheme-specific prosody in a weighted constraint system with gradiently active symbols, Gradient Harmonic Grammar (Smolensky et al. 2014; Smolensky and Goldrick 2016). Exceptional prosodification effects result from the interaction of two constraint penalty manipulations with independent support: [1] scaling of constraint violations according to prosodic context (Hsu and Jesney 2016) and [2] contrastive levels of activity in underlying forms (Smolensky and Goldrick 2016). The interaction is illustrated in an analysis of the distribution of French nasal vowels and linking [n]. This approach reduces the amount of structure posited for URs, and provides new arguments for a more uniform syntax-prosody mapping.
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/003846
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Submitted ms.
keywords: nasal vowels, liaison, exceptionality, syntax-prosody interface, gradient symbolic representations, harmonic grammar, phonology
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