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Title:Partial Class Behavior and Nasal Place Assimilation
Authors:Jaye Padgett
Abstract:Partial Class Behavior and Nasal Place Assimilation

Jaye Padgett

UC Santa Cruz

This paper and the previous one investigate the status of feature classes

like Place and Laryngeal in featural phonology. In a departure from

Feature Geometry, I argue that constraints mentioning such classes are

gradiently violable in the sense given within Optimality Theory. The

result is what I call partial class behavior: under compulsion of a

constraint mentioning an entire feature class, only a proper subset of

the relevant features spread, for reasons of markedness, locality or

whatever. This idea leads to feature class generalizations that are

not visible to Feature Geometry.

ROA-112 strengthens the evidence for a class Color (cf. Odden's 1991

[back]/[round]), arguing that the copatternings of [back] and

[round] harmonies in Turkic and other languages represent instances

of Color harmony, formerly unrecognized only because Color spreading

is often gradiently violated, leading to partial class behavior. This

paper also argues for an understanding of segment transparency as

segment participation, following work of Smolensky and McCarthy.

ROA-113 focusses on nasal place assimilation and has two goals. The

first is to demonstrate the robust existence of partial class

behavior in nasal place assimilation, and so further motivate the

ideas outlined above. The second is to better understand nasal

place assimilation itself. This latter goal leads to proposals for

the employment of a release feature in phonology (following Steriade)

and for very general spreading constraints.

ROA-113 supersedes ROA-112 in some technical details, and the two

papers should be read together.
Type:Paper/tech report
Article:Version 1