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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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Academic Paper


Title: Now You Hear It, Now You Don’t: The effect of markedness on the perception of unattested clusters
Author: Tracy Lennertz
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: Northeastern University
Linguistic Field: Phonetics; Phonology; Psycholinguistics
Subject Language: English
Abstract: Linguistic theory predicts that speakers are equipped with universal sonority principles that restrict the structure of the syllable: onset clusters with sonority rises are preferred to onsets with plateaus, which are preferred to onsets with falling sonority (bn > bd > lb). We investigate the source of this preference in English, a language in which these sonority profiles are unattested. We gauged speakers’ preferences for unattested onsets by examining their susceptibility to epenthetic repair. If English speakers are sensitive to onset structure, then onsets that are universally dispreferred should be more likely to elicit repair (e.g., lbif,lebif). Results from a syllable judgment task and an identity task support our predictions: onsets of rising sonority are perceived more accurately compared to onsets with sonority plateaus, which, in turn, are perceived more accurately compared to onsets with sonority falls. Our findings suggest that speakers are equipped with phonological preferences for sonority profiles that are unattested in their language.
Type: Individual Paper
Status: Completed
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