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LINGUIST List 18.69

Wed Jan 10 2007

Diss: Historical Ling: Irwin: 'Mora Obstruent Allomorphy in Sino-Ja...'

Editor for this issue: Hannah Morales <hannahlinguistlist.org>


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        1.    Mark Irwin, Mora Obstruent Allomorphy in Sino-Japanese Morphemes in Final -/ki/: A case of homomorphic diffusion in modern Japanese


Message 1: Mora Obstruent Allomorphy in Sino-Japanese Morphemes in Final -/ki/: A case of homomorphic diffusion in modern Japanese
Date: 09-Jan-2007
From: Mark Irwin <mark_irwinmac.com>
Subject: Mora Obstruent Allomorphy in Sino-Japanese Morphemes in Final -/ki/: A case of homomorphic diffusion in modern Japanese


Institution: University of Sheffield
Program: School of East Asian Studies
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2006

Author: Mark Irwin

Dissertation Title: Mora Obstruent Allomorphy in Sino-Japanese Morphemes in Final -/ki/: A case of homomorphic diffusion in modern Japanese

Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics

Subject Language(s): Japanese (jpn)

Dissertation Director:
Nicolas Tranter

Dissertation Abstract:

Modern Japanese exhibits apparently irregular allomorphic behaviour amongst
a subset of bimoraic S[ino]-J[apanese] morphemes, those with a final mora
in -/ki/, when appearing as the initial morpheme in a SJ bimorphemic
compound whose second morpheme is /k/-initial. Detailed examination of
synchronic and diachronic written corpora concludes that what is being
witnessed is not irregularity as claimed in previous research, but
homomorphemic diffusion, a process akin to lexical diffusion operating on a
homomorphemic level. The independent status of homomorphemic diffusion is
lent further weight by the phenomenon's conforming to Bybee's (2000, 2001,
2002) and Phillips' (1998, 2001) theories that higher frequency lexemes
(here homomorphs) tend to be affected earlier and more thoroughly in the
case of reductive sound changes. When all the evidence here presented is
examined, homomorphs appear to be behaving in lexical diffusionist terms
just as individual lexemes or morphemes might be expected to.



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