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Title:Falling sonority onsets, loanwords, and Syllable Contact
Authors:Maria Gouskova
Comment:CLS 37 proceedings, 2002
Abstract:When CVC languages borrow loanwords with complex onsets, they often
repair the clusters differently depending on sonority: vowel epenthesis
is peripheral in s-obstruent words, English ‘speech’ > Central Pahari
[ispiitS], but internal in rising sonority clusters, English ‘slate’ >
Central Pahari [silet]. Previous analyses (Selkirk 1982, Broselow 1992)
have attributed the pervasive split pattern to the different structure
of s-obstruent clusters: they are complex segments and cannot be broken
up by epenthesis. I propose instead that the pattern is an effect of
SYLLABLE CONTACT (‘sonority falls across a syllable boundary’).
Epenthesis in clusters is peripheral whenever the resulting VCCV
sequence has falling sonority, as in s-obstruent clusters. Epenthesis
breaks up the cluster when sonority would rise, creating a CVCV
sequence. New evidence shows that the purported limitation of the split
pattern to s-obstruent clusters is an artifact of the source of the
loanwords, English and French. Russian has a wide variety of falling and
flat sonority clusters, which are repaired differently in Kirgiz: by
peripheral epenthesis in falling and flat sonority onsets, zveno ‘link’
> [uzvana], and by internal epenthesis in rising sonority onsets, kvas
‘kvass’> [kWbas]. The resistance of s-clusters to epenthesis is thus
shown to arise from independently needed constraints rather than from a
difference in structure.
Type:Paper/tech report
Article:Version 1