LINGUIST List 10.1029

Mon Jul 5 1999

Books: Slavic Linguistics

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  1. LINCOM EUROPA, Slavic ling; The Evolution of Fixed Stress in Slavic, M. Baerman

Message 1: Slavic ling; The Evolution of Fixed Stress in Slavic, M. Baerman

Date: Fri, 02 Jul 1999 11:41:50 +0200
Subject: Slavic ling; The Evolution of Fixed Stress in Slavic, M. Baerman

Matthew Baerman, University of Surrey

The Evolution of Fixed Stress in Slavic is the first book-length
treatment of the development of fixed stress systems in the Slavic
languages. The complex system of morphological stress found in the
ancestral language has been replaced in a number of the contemporary
languages by phonologically fixed stress (e.g. initial as in Czech,
penultimate as in Polish or antepenultimate as in Macedonian). The
details of this major morphological innovation have remained unclear,
as there is no textual evidence. Instead, this book address this
problem through dialect geography, looking at areas where the
transition from free to fixed stress is still discernible as a dialect
continuum. Three languages in which fixed stress arose independently
are examined, namely Kashubian (West Slavic), Macedonian (South
Slavic) and the Carpathian dialects of Ukrainian (East Slavic). Each
area is treated as a separate case study, with the prosodic and
morphological factors leading to fixed stress clearly distinguished.
The formal analysis is in terms of Optimality Theory, which allows for
a graphic portrayal of the interaction of prosody and morphology . It
is evident that the decisive prosodic factor is a prosodically
motivated ban on final stress, which triggers a chain of morphological
innovations, remarkably similar in all three cases. This book should
be of interest to Slavists, and to all linguists interested in
diachronic accentology.

The author is a Research Fellow at the University of Surrey.

ISBN 3 89586 630 X. 
LINCOM Studies in Slavic Linguistics 15. 
Ca. 200pp. USD 70 / DM 112 / pound sterling 41. July 1999.

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