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LINGUIST List 19.317

Mon Jan 28 2008

Qs: The Behavior of Labiovelars

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        1.    Joaquim Brandão de Carvalho, The Behavior of Labiovelars

Message 1: The Behavior of Labiovelars
Date: 26-Jan-2008
From: Joaquim Brandão de Carvalho <jbrandaoext.jussieu.fr>
Subject: The Behavior of Labiovelars
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The research I am doing concerns, not labiovelars in particular, but
phonological primes in general, the question of whether they should be seen
as binary or monovalent, their hierarchy (if any), and several
markedness-related issues. In this respect, the status of labiovelars, as
well as that of retroflexes for example, remains unclear both in terms of
internal structure and markedness. I believe that this is largely due to
the fact that such consonants are restricted to specific linguistic areas,
mainly in Africa, of which I am not a specialist. The descriptions I read
(on Kru languages plus Igbo and Ngbaka) didn't shed any light on the object
of my query.

The sort of information I am looking for could be reformulated as follows.
Retroflex consonants, for example, can be shown to be 'coronals,' not only
in articulatory terms, but also by their processual behavior, since they
undergo several rules also affecting such consonants as /t d s z/, etc.
How, then, do labiovelars, which are both labial and velar in articulatory
terms, behave? Are they primarily labial or velar on the basis of
processual evidence? or can they be shown to belong to both classes
according to the process involved?

Thank you very much for any piece of information. I will post a summary if
there are enough responses.
Joaquim Brandão de Carvalho
UFR de Sciences du Langage
Université Paris 8
2, rue de la Liberté
F-93526 Saint-Denis cedex

Linguistic Field(s): Phonetics

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