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Precedence Faith and Position of Exponence by Horwood Graham
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Topic:  Precedence Faith and Position of Exponence by Horwood Graham
posted itemPosted - 10/06/2004 :  15:34:02
Horwood Graham

Department of Chinese, Translation and Linguistics

Language Information Sciences Research Centre

The Linguistic Society of Hong Kong



Horwood Graham

Rutgers University

Precedence Faith and Position of Exponence

Time: 4:30 - 6:00 pm

Date: 14th June 2004 (Monday)

Venue: B7603 (CTL Multi-purpose Room), City University of Hong Kong


Optimality Theory has traditionally taken infixation in natural language to arise from the interaction of constraints on phonological well-formedness and constraints on surface morpheme position, where the surface positioning of morphological exponence (PoE) is taken in turn to be properly attributable to the rankings of parochial alignment constraints. The current effort will argue on several counts that constraints preserving input precedence relations, rather than parochial alignment constraints, must arbitrate exponence position in this manner. It will be shown that the precedence faith theory preserves morpheme-ordering universals in factorial typology where the alignment-based theory cannot. It will be shown that the faithfulness theory predicts semantic contrast by morpheme re-order, a possibility lost under the alignment approach to PoE. And finally we will see that the precedence faith theory is entailed by a necessary proscription against morphologically-indexed markedness constraints more generally. The primacy of the precedence faithfulness approach established, we will consider a number of formal problems that arise from its application to a number of dislocational processes traditionally accounted for with alignment. It will be shown that straightforward expansions of the theory provide a natural account of hyperinfixation avoidance in the Austronesian language Tagalog; infixation processes not triggered by phonological well-formedness conditions, as in the Mon-Khmer language Katu; and an apparent case of bitropic morphology found in the Arawakan language Terêna.
Language of Presentation: English
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