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Voice Quality

By John H. Esling, Scott R. Moisik, Allison Benner, Lise Crevier-Buchman

Voice Quality "The first description of voice quality production in forty years, this book provides a new framework for its study: The Laryngeal Articulator Model. Informed by instrumental examinations of the laryngeal articulatory mechanism, it revises our understanding of articulatory postures to explain the actions, vibrations and resonances generated in the epilarynx and pharynx."

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Let's Talk

By David Crystal

Let's Talk "Explores the factors that motivate so many different kinds of talk and reveals the rules we use unconsciously, even in the most routine exchanges of everyday conversation."

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Dissertation Information

Title: The Wandering S: The problem of the s-mobile in Germanic and Indo-European Add Dissertation
Author: Mark Southern Update Dissertation
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Princeton University, Linguistic
Completed in: 1997
Linguistic Subfield(s): Historical Linguistics; Morphology; Phonology;
Language Family(ies): Germanic
Slavic Subgroup
Latin Subgroup
New English
Director(s): Brent Vine
Mark Hale
Robert Ebert

Abstract: The movable s defies distributional predictability, within Indo-European and later daughter-languages. Word-initial s-/zero alternations occur across every IE dialect-group, apparently without conditioning or living morphological function, nonetheless in certain languages — chiefly Germanic and Balto-Slavic — exhibiting unexpected, regenerative durability. Enigmas surrounding its morphophonemic origins have eluded satisfactory resolution. Phonologically-conditioned sentential sandhi, involving *s-degemination across word-boundaries by sound-rule, alongside metanalysis (n-orange), does not adequately account for the data's nature and spread, even with the help of analogical extension and hypercorrection (accretion/loss).

Chapters 1-2 deal with phonological-distribution issues; Chapter 3 explores origin, character and function. IE s-movable's original and subsequent nature is investigated for possible morphological explanations, particularly as applied to root-structure constraints, to motivate and classify the doublets' structurally anomalous behavior. Initial ±s shows symmetry with root-final s-clusters; a system-gap is filled. S-loss is probably the dominant dynamic, with complementary s-addition effects.

S-loss primacy is borne out by the secondary, successive continuation of s-movable into Germanic. The chronological layering of Germanic evidence relative to the Sound Shifts supplies an unusual vantage-point for observing the process over time. Chapter 4 views s-mobile's later development against the extraordinary preponderance of material specifically from the Germanic dialects, morphologically analyzed case-by-case. To questions of word-boundaries' non-salience, OHG evidence (Celtic, Indic) for Auslaut-conditioned word-initial voicing alternants (Nôtkêrs Anlautgesetz) suggests that the IE sentence-string was a linguistically significant unit surprisingly late. Stabreim, binomial pairs, phonetic and prosodic attributes, and expressive (affectively-flavored) features contribute to the composite Germanic picture. S-movable's survival and successive renewal are considered in the light of evidence for Germanic's dialectal archaism within IE.

Chapters 5-6 discuss the detailed Germanic, Baltic, and pan-IE evidence against relative chronology and phrasal-domain hierarchies (word-boundaries' porosity), and against the cross-linguistically marked, unstable phonetic character of sibilants, particularly their clusters. Beside the IE's sibilant's phonological isolation are set S-clusters' phonemic extraneousness, late acquisition, and ready simplifiability, in child-language and aphasia.