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Title:Prosodic Levels and Constraints in Banawa and Suruwaha
Authors:Dan Everett
Abstract: Prosodic Levels and Constraints in Banawa and Suruwaha

ROA-121 65 pp.

proslev.ps, --.rtf

Daniel L. Everett

University of Pittsburgh


This article is a drastically revised version of an earlier paper that

circulated via this list in 1995. It offers a detailed description of

two languages of the little-studied Arawan language family of

Amazonas, Brazil. It argues that a constraint-based approach to

prosody in these languages is superior to a derivational approach,

especially in its ability to handle edge effects that would be

accounted for by Extrametricality in a rule-based analysis, as well as

Word Minimality effects - words in these languages are minimally

bimoraic. The paper argues that the relationship between prosodic

levels is not as direct as phonological theory has previously assumed.

Phonological models generally assume some notion of hierarchy (e.g.

Pike 1967, Selkirk 1980, Ito and Mester 1995) in which a given level

on the hierarchy is 'manifested by' units of the next level down. So,

for example, words are manifested by feet and feet by syllables. This

paper argues that feet are constructed on moras in Banawa, but that

phonotactics (in which a family of Enhancement constraints is argued

to play a crucial role), exceptional stress patterns, and a language-

specific phenomenon of Name Truncation (shorten names to two

syllables, as opposed to two moras) argue strongly for an active role

for the syllable in Banawa phonology. However, foot boundaries may

fall within syllables, violating a Syllable Integrity constraint. This

raises problems for models which assume that foot boundaries can never

fall within syllables. The paper also demonstrates the importance of

a constraint of Word Binarity in Suruwaha - words like to be two

well-formed feet in size. These languages also show that the Minimal

Word cannot be derived from the Minimal Foot. This is because the

languages have degenerate feet (which cannot be reanalyzed in terms of

either Lengthening (Hayes 1995) or Catalexis (Kiparsky 1991). They

also show that Foot Binarity must be broken down into Foot Minimality

and Foot Maximality. Finally, they lead to refinements understanding

of diphthongs, suggesting two new constraints Rising Diphthong and

Falling Diphthong. Most importantly, perhaps, is the fact that this

paper presents new data of potential interest to phonologists of all

theoretical persuasions.


Type:Paper/tech report
Article:Version 1