LINGUIST List 6.1331

Sat Sep 30 1995

Books: Phonology, Semantics

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Helga Humbert, Phonological Segments: Their Structure and Behaviour.
Diss. Leiden 1995. Distr. by Holland Academic Graphics, The Hague. 287
pp. Dfl. 40,-. E-mail for info:
___ has the nature of a research of a research program. It offers a highly
constrained model for the representation of segments and exemplifies how
this model can be exploited to account for assimilation and dissimilation
processes. The model is based on cross-linguistic research. Drawing on
insights from Dependency Phonology, Radical CV Phonology, Government
Phonology and Feature Geometry, it is argued that segments are best built
up of monovalent elements organised into a manner and a place
component. Each constituent of the structure can be involved in a specific
type of assimilation or dissimilation process, of which the conditioning
factors are determined both by the nature of the element involved and by
its fixed structural position. The book also offers alternative analyses of
many processes well-known from the literature. Most importantly it is
shown that consonantal and obstruent properties are of a dominant nature
due to which they are static as compared to vowel-like elements, which are
of a dependent nature causing them to be comparatively dynamic which
manifests itself for instance in their ability to spread.
Although the book deals with segmental phonology, the emphasis on
theoretical issues makes it of interest to theoretical linguists more
* Gertjan Postma: Zero semantics: A study of the syntactic
conception of quantificational meaning
If you wish to acquire these dissertations, or if you want
further information on the dissertation series, contact the
HIL secretary, Ms. Jose Birker, at
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