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Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more



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Academic Paper


Title: Polish stress: looking for phonetic evidence of a bidirectional system
Author: Luiza Newlin-Łukowicz
Institution: New York University
Linguistic Field: Phonetics; Phonology
Subject Language: Polish
Abstract: This paper reports on a study of Polish stress, the only uncontested example of a bidirectional system with internal lapses (Kager 2001, McCarthy 2003). The results indicate that Polish stress is non-iterative, a finding that seriously calls into question the existence of this particular stress type. An analysis of the acoustic prominence of syllables traditionally associated with different stress levels suggests that Polish simple words exhibit only one (penultimate) prominence. The stress pattern in compounds is less uniform; they can carry one or two (penultimate) stresses, depending on their prosodic structure. I analyse the distribution of stresses in compounds as governed by clash avoidance. Specifically, compound stems are parsed into separate PWds and assigned separate stresses only if the emergent trochees are non-adjacent. Hence, four-syllable compounds like /tsuʤɔ-ˈʑεmʲεts/ ‘foreigner’ have one stress, while compounds like /banaˈnɔvɔ-arbuˈzɔvɨ/ ‘banana-watermelon’ have two. I ascribe this pattern to the undominated ranking of the *FF constraint.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Phonology Vol. 29, Issue 2, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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