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Title:Japanese /r/ is not feature-less: A rejoinder to Labrune (2014)
Authors:Shigeto Kawahara
Comment:Submitted. Comments welcome.
Abstract:Labrune (2014) argues that Japanese /r/ is structurally empty. This reply argues that the phonological characteristics of /r/ which are discussed by Labrune (2014) come with many systematic exceptions, and hence they are better handled in terms of violable constraints. Alternative analyses based on Optimality Theory (Prince & Smolensky, 2004) are presented. This reply also points out that the three constraints on /r/ that are discussed by Labrune (2014) are in fact not specific to /r/, and therefore, motivating structural emptiness based on these patterns would face a problem of not being able to distinguish these segments. Based on these considerations, this reply concludes that /r/ (and other segments) should have segmental contents.
Type:Paper/tech report
Area/Keywords:Phonology, Japanese, violable constraints, underspecification, markedness, /r/
Article:Version 1