|Title:||On the nonuniformity of weight-to-stress and stress preservation effects in English|
|Abstract:||On the nonuniformity of weight-to-stress and
stress preservation effects in English
Secondary stress placement in English is affected by syllable weight,
by the placement of stress in the stem of a derived word, and by
lexical idiosyncrasy. However, the effects of all of these factors is
'nonuniform', in the sense of Prince (1993): in some contexts they
unequivocally determine stress placement, while in others they have
little, or no effect. To the extent that it has been dealt with, this
nonuniformity has tremendously complicated prior analyses of English
stress. At the root of these complications is the tenet of
inviolability, or full satisfaction. Once full satisfaction is
replaced by Optimality Theoretic minimal violation, both descriptive
and explanatory advances are made possible.
In section 1 the usual, productive patterns of weight-to-secondary
stress are accounted for in terms of a small set of ranked
constraints. Section 2 contains a brief discussion of primary stress
placement, demonstrating that quantity sensitive primary stress
placement is compatible with the relatively low rank of the
Weight-to-Stress constraint that the facts of secondary stress
placement require. Section 3 examines lexical exceptions, and apparent
cases of cyclic stress preservation, and argues for an account based
both on stress preservation, formalized as prosodic faithfulness, and
on lexically specific constraint ranking. By interspersing prosodic
faithfulness constraints, and lexically specific constraints into the
hierarchy established for regular stress, the same principles that
determine regular prosodification can be used to straightforwardly and
precisely capture the distribution of lexical, and stem based stress.
Residual data, and issues, are discussed in appendices.
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