Eastern/Central Arrernte is a range of closely-related dialects spoken in an area around and including Alice Springs in the Northern Territory of Australia. It can be considered one of the strongest Australian Indigenous languages, with an estimated 2,000 speakers and continuing transmission to children. Nonetheless, Arrernte is under pressure and must be considered endangered.
There are four areas of particular focus in this work. The focus on segmental phonology reviews and extends modern analyses of the vowel system, and in the consonant system presents instrumental articulatory evidence on the contrast between alveolar and post-alveolar phonological categories. Three fundamental aspects of the morphological structure are presented, primarily in relation to verbs. A range of complex verb types is distinguished, including an analysis of variation in which a single verb may alternatively constitute either a single word or more than one word. Prosodic units are shown to play an important role in a rich variety of morphological processes which include suffix allomorphy, reduplication, compounding and verb splitting. The final area of focus is verbal and deverbal derivation. The approach throughout is basically descriptive. Numerous natural language examples are provided.