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"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: A Realization Optimality Theory approach to blocking and extended morphological exponence
Author: Zheng Xu
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://profile.nus.edu.sg/fass/chsxz/
Institution: National University of Singapore
Author: Mark Aronoff
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://www.linguistics.stonybrook.edu/Users/maronoff/
Institution: Stony Brook University
Linguistic Field: Morphology
Abstract: Blocking in inflection occurs when a morphological exponent prevents the application of another exponent expressing the same feature value, thus barring the occurrence of multiple exponents of a single morphosyntactic feature value. In instances of extended exponence, more than one exponent in the same word realizes the same feature value. We provide a unified account of blocking and extended exponence that combines a realizational approach to inflection with Optimality Theory (Realization Optimality Theory), encoding morphological realization rules as ranked violable constraints. The markedness constraint *F S bars the realization of any morphosyntactic feature value by more than one exponent. If *F S ranks lower than two or more realization constraints expressing the same feature value, then we observe extended exponence. Otherwise, we find blocking of lower-ranked exponents. We show that Realization Optimality Theory is superior to various alternative approaches to blocking and extended morphological exponence.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Journal of Linguistics Vol. 47, Issue 3, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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