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Revitalizing Endangered Languages

Edited by Justyna Olko & Julia Sallabank

Revitalizing Endangered Languages "This guidebook provides ideas and strategies, as well as some background, to help with the effective revitalization of endangered languages. It covers a broad scope of themes including effective planning, benefits, wellbeing, economic aspects, attitudes and ideologies."

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Dissertation Information

Title: A Study of Constraint Interaction in Slavic Phonology Add Dissertation
Author: Yuki Takatori Update Dissertation
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Yale University, Department of Linguistics
Completed in: 1997
Linguistic Subfield(s): Phonology;
Language Family(ies): Slavic Subgroup
Director(s): Jaye Padgett
Bill Mahota
Laurence Horn
Draga Zec

Abstract: This thesis surveys a range of phonological phenomena in Slavic phonology, within the framewolk of Optimality Theory, with the object of providing formal explanations for them. In Chapter 1, I review Havlik's Law in Old Russian and argue that what are commonly known as 'exceptions' to this law are actually by-products of phonological and morphological requirements. In Chapter 2, I examine the vowel-zero alternation in modern Polish. Since this alternation has its origin in the disappearance of historical jers, many authors posit synchronic jers and a deletion rule to account for it. However, I demonstrate that there is no need to postulate such abstract vowels if two morphological factors are taken into account; (1) foreign lineage and (2) declensional class. Chapter 3 deals with the history of palatalization in Slavic languages. Although Russian has a large inventory of palatalized consonants which can occur syllable-initially as well as syllable-finally, the majority of Slavic languages impose positional and segmental restrictions on the occurrence of palatalization. For instance, Bulgarian prohibits all soft consonants at the end of a syllable, while Polish prohibits only soft labials at this position. I represent such differences by means of constraint reranking. Chapter 4 explores voice alternation in modern Polish. It is generally held that the [voice] of sonorants is unspecified; however, I concur with Lombardi (1996) and specify [voice] in sonorants as well as in obstruents. It is widely known that, unlike the [voice] of obstruents, that of sonorants does not spread to neighboring segments. I argue that such inertness is the result of compliance with IDENT[Release], which bans any change in released segments.