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«A thesis submitted for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the University of Cambridge by Brett Miller Trinity College 25 May 2012 Joint ...»

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Feature Patterns

Their Sources and Status

in Grammar and Reconstruction

A thesis submitted for the degree of

Doctor of Philosophy in the University of Cambridge

by

Brett Miller

Trinity College

25 May 2012

Joint supervisors:

James Clackson, Jesus College

Bert Vaux, King’s College

© 2012 Brett Miller. All rights reserved.

Abstract

This work investigates feature co-occurrence trends, with special focus on the

phonology of the larynx and its interaction with supralaryngeal articulation. My examination of the phonological behavior and phonetic realization of various features, especially [voi], [spr], [cst], and [son], probes the causes behind a wide range of crosslinguistic trends in segment inventory structure, along with the representation of several sound types including breathy-voiced stops and implosives. The most general insight from the roughly eighty patterns investigated is that their specific content can be plausibly derived from non-cognitive factors. This poses a major duplication problem if the same patterns are attributed to innate cognitive stipulations.

I address this problem with a critical review of recent trends in grammar design, arguing for a theory where as much as possible grammatical structure is learned rather than innate and where as much as possible optimization occurs during acquisition rather than during mature speech. After exploring the logical relationships among several major components of existing grammar design theories, I recommend integrating generation with evaluation and configuring grammatical directions in a representational format. I also review research on the interface between linguistics and cognitive science and argue that my proposal is well suited for implementation through distributed, continuous, and highly parallel processing systems.

The main feature co-occurrence insights in the earlier chapters also facilitate a reanalysis of one of the oldest unsolved problems in historical linguistics: the evolution of the Indo-European stop series. In the process of developing a novel solution, I show how the use of features can increase the efficiency and comprehensiveness of reconstruction.

By highlighting the extent to which feature co-occurrence patterns can be derived from independently evident non-cognitive factors, this work contributes to a growing body of research focused on removing innate/learnable duplication problems. While most of the grammatical details of sound systems seem best removed from the innate endowment, I do not conclude that phonetic content and phonological cognition never interact directly. In each of the three main dimensions of this work – developing phonological profiles of specific sound types, exploring implications for grammar design, and historical problem solving – I find evidence that cognition maintains extensive awareness of the phonetic values of the variables it manipulates.

This thesis is the result of my own work, neither previously nor currently submitted in whole or part for any other qualification at any other university. It includes nothing which is the outcome of work done in collaboration except where specifically indicated in the text.

Length: 76,774 words excluding bibliography Table of Contents Abstract

Abbreviations

Acknowledgments

1 Introduction

1.1 Introduction

1.2 Features

1.3 Grammar and sound change

1.4 Chapter summaries

1.5 Feature definitions

2 Laryngeal Phonetics

2.1 Introduction

2.2 The larynx

2.3 Laryngeal articulations of voiceless unaspirated stops

2.3.1 Utterance-initial prephonation

2.3.2 Silent abduction after voiced segments

2.3.3 Proposed roles of vocal fold tensing

2.3.3.1 Devoicing

2.3.3.2 Glottal widening and pitch raising

2.3.4 Voiceless unaspirated stops: conclusion

2.4 Laryngeal constriction and whisper

2.5 Breathy voice

2.5.1 Introduction

2.5.2 Whispery and strict breathy voice: articulation

2.5.3 Voiced aspirates

2.5.4 Breathy voice: cues

2.5.5 Slack voice

2.5.5.1 General

2.5.5.2 Voiceless slack stops occurring initially and medially

2.5.5.2.1 Javanese

2.5.5.2.2 Xhosa

2.5.5.2.3 Zulu

2.5.5.2.4 An Eastern Armenian speech variety

2.5.5.2.5 Conclusion

2.5.5.3 Voiceless slack stops with voiced medial allophones

2.5.5.3.1 Korean

2.5.5.3.2 Wu Chinese

2.5.5.4 Voiceless slack stops and voiced stops in phonetic contrast

2.5.6 Conclusion

2.6. Articulatory strategies for maintaining closure voicing

2.6.1 General

2.6.2 Non-explosion

2.7 Conclusion

3 Laryngeal Phonology

3.1 Introduction

3.2 Economy and enhancement

3.2.1 Introduction

3.2.2 Languages with a single stop series

3.2.3 Neutralization

3.2.4 Enhancement

3.2.4.1 Voiceless aspiration

3.2.4.2 Laryngeal tension

3.2.4.3 Non-explosion and prenasalization

3.2.5 Preponderantly voiced stop inventories

3.2.6 Why voiced aspirates are different

3.2.6.1 General

3.2.6.2 Jakobson’s universal and Proto-Indo-European





3.2.6.3 Madurese

3.2.6.4 Kelabit and Lun Dayeh

3.2.6.5 Conclusion

3.2.7 Diachronic ejective voicing

3.3 Features

3.3.1 Introduction

3.3.2 Phonetically natural and unnatural features

3.3.3 Feature acquisition

3.3.4 Universal constraints on feature-correlate mapping

3.3.5 Modeling phonetic variation

3.3.6 Representing aspiration

3.3.6.1 [spread glottis]

3.3.6.2 [heightened subglottal pressure]

3.3.6.3 VOT and timing in phonological representations

3.3.6.4 Auditory definitions: intensity, duration, and turbulent noise...............131 3.3.6.5 Broader issues

3.3.6.6 Conclusion

3.3.7 Representing voice

3.3.7.1 Articulatory or acoustic [voice]

3.3.7.2

Abstract

low-frequency [voice]; slack and stiff stops

3.3.7.3 [stiff], [slack], and larynx height

3.3.7.4 Split treatments: Sonorant/Laryngeal Voice and underspecification.....142 3.3.7.5 Conclusion

3.3.8 Feature ambivalence and sonorance

3.3.9 Laryngeal ambivalence in Germanic

3.4. Beyond Feature Geometry trees: larynx-stricture interactions

3.5 Comparison of enhancement with partial positional neutralization

3.6 Conclusion

4 Feature Co-Occurrence Trends

4.1. Introduction

4.2. Feature co-occurrence trends

4.3. Explanations

4.3.1 Place

4.3.1.1 Coronals

4.3.1.2 Rounding

4.3.1.3 Liquids and nasals

4.3.1.4 Uvulars, laryngeals, and clicks

4.3.2 The larynx and aerodynamics

4.3.2.1 General

4.3.2.2 Nasals and liquids

4.3.2.3 Fricatives

4.3.3 Vowels

4.3.4 Interim reduction

4.4. Implications

4.4.1 Introduction

4.4.2 Why sound change is not teleological

4.4.3 Why phonology is not dysfunctional

4.5. Conclusion

5 Grammar

5.1 Introduction

5.2 Grammar

5.2.1 Definition

5.2.2 Development

5.3 Optimality Theory and its classic schema

5.4 Necessary parallelism?

5.4.1 Imdlawn Tashlhiyt Berber

5.4.2 Tongan

5.3.3 Lardil

5.4.4 Southern Paiute, Yidiɲ, and Axininca Campa

5.4.5 Southeastern Tepehuan

5.4.6 Review

5.5 The architecture of phonology

5.5.1 Grammars differ in content, not just its permutation

5.5.2 Users optimize grammars, not just words (and not typologies)

5.5.3 Grammars don’t handle the rich base

5.6 Generalized partial representations

5.6.1 Introduction

5.6.2 Illustrations: epenthesis and spirantization

5.6.3 Underspecification and multi-modal cognition

5.6.4 Feeding

5.6.5 Counterfeeding

5.6.6 Bleeding and counterbleeding

5.6.7 Do something only/except when

5.6.8 Summary

5.7 Output-drivenness

6 Reconstruction

6.1. Introduction

6.2. The Proto-Indo-European stop system

6.2.1 Comparative evidence

6.2.2 A new proposal

6.2.3 Place of articulation issues

6.3. Diachronic outcomes

6.4. Comparison with other reconstructions

6.4.1 Other kinds of voiced stops

6.4.2 Ejectives

6.4.3 Fricatives

6.4.4 Conclusion

6.5. The labial “gap”

6.5.1 Critical typology of reconstructions

6.5.1.1 PIE had a /D()/ series with the bilabial unusually rare or absent..........248 6.5.1.2 PIE had a bilabial gap, but it was natural

6.5.1.3 Traditional PIE /b/ merged with some other segment(s) before PIE.....250 6.5.2 Merger of traditional PIE /b/ with /bʱ/ after PIE

6.5.2.1 Introduction

6.5.2.2 The simpler cases

6.5.2.3 Armenian and Germanic

6.5.2.4 Italic

6.5.2.5 Indic

6.5.2.6 Greek

6.5.2.7 Conclusion

6.6. Alleged voiceless aspirate etyma

6.7. Conclusion

7 Conclusion

Bibliography

Figures

2.1 Glottal width continuum

2.2 Cricoid rotation during larynx lowering

Zulu spectrograms

2.3 bhabha [b̤aː̤ b̤a̤] ‘trap’

2.4 baba [baːba] ‘father (direct address)’

2.5, 2.6 idada [iˈd̤ada̤] ‘duck’

̤̤ 2.7, 2.

8 ukuguga [uɡuˈɡ̈ṳɡa] ‘to grow old’

̈ Hindi spectrograms

2.9 ata [ɑːtɑ] ‘he comes’

2.10 mata [mɑːtɑ] ‘mother’

2.11 Korean inter-speaker variation in stop-conditioned vowel phonation..................62

2.12 Korean coronal stop closure durations

3.1 Phonetic geometry (partial)

3.2 Suggested maximum number of features assignable to the correlates shown......120

3.3 Association of some correlates to some features in Hindi stops

3.4 Example of phonetic correlate assignment to [slack], [spr], and [voi].................123 Tables

1.1 Some features with working definitions

1.2 Features and definitions (continued)

2.1 Voiceless slack stop types

2.2 Phonetic differences between Korean initial fortis and lenis stops

3.1 Stop inventories with enhanced voice series

3.2 Preponderantly voiced stop inventories

4 Constraint set adapted from Calabrese (1992)

6.1 Comparative evidence for the PIE stops

6.2 Diachronic trends

Abbreviations

–  –  –

Acknowledgments Navigating the interfaces between phonology and phonetics, synchrony and history, theoretical universals and the deepest, darkest details of Armenian would have been impossible without the combined guidance of experts in several disciplines. James Clackson, Bert Vaux, and my examiners Francis Nolan and Jane Stuart-Smith provided the most intense and rewarding linguistic conversations and feedback I have ever had.

Jeff Mielke generously read and discussed the sections where I quote him most.

Steve Parker and two anonymous reviewers helped me transform a chapter for early publication, and Patricia Shaw offered unexpected encouragement in the process. Robert Blust, Charles Barrack, Matthew Gordon, Johanna Nichols, and Philomen Probert graciously provided feedback on other draft sections. Other linguists who answered questions or helped me access material include Luca Busetto, Marc Brunelle, François Dell, Didier Demolin, Adamantios Gafos, William Idsardi, Máté Ittzés, Gregory Iverson, Ranko Matasović, Joyce Mathangwane, Pramod Pandey, Joe Pittayaporn, Rachid Ridouane, Catherine Ringen, David Rood, Joseph Salmons, Bridget Samuels, Rebecca Scarborough, Paul Sidwell, Kenneth Stevens, Rupert Thompson, and Michael Weiss. I am grateful for all their help.

Susan Prince instigated this project as a conference paper. The excellent hosts of GLIEP I at Cambridge later edited the proceedings for the University Press. The College of the Holy and Undivided Trinity provided funding and an unparalleled living environment for the next three years. Since then I have owed particular thanks to David Rood and Lise Menn for ongoing help and inspiration, and to Norlin Library for special access to resources.



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