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Title:Primary word stress in Thompson River Salish
Authors:Gail Coelho
Abstract:This paper presents an OT analysis of the primary stress system in Thompson River Salish, an Interior Salishan language spoken in British Columbia, Canada. It shows that the pattern of conflicting directionality in stress in this language can be analyzed as a conflict between two alignment constraints, each of which targets opposite edges of the word. Roots and grammatical suffixes in Thompson River Salish are divided into two classes: accented and unaccented. In a word with no accented morphemes, stress is on the first suffix; that is, it is leftward oriented. In a word with accented morphemes, stress is on the rightmost accented morpheme. This paper argues that leftward stress is the result of an Align-L constraint whice requires primary word stress to be on the leftmost vowel in the prosodic word; but rightward stress is due to the dominance of an Anchor-Pos-R constraint that forbids deletion of accent on the rightmost accented morpheme.

Interestingly, the Thompson River Salish stress pattern appears at first glance to be a suffix dominant system; roots and suffixes show the following stressability hierarchy (where > means 'gets preference in stress over'): accented suffix > accented root > unaccented suffix > unaccented root. Although suffixes stand higher in this hierarchy than roots, I show in this paper that the TRS stress system actually exhibits dominance in root-faithfulness: the dominance of Dep-IORoot ensures that accent insertion is avoided on an unaccented root, making unaccented suffixes more stressable than unaccented roots. The fact that accented suffixes are more stressable than accented roots is derived from the dominance of the Anchor-Pos-R constraint that forbids deletion of rightmost accent when accent is present in the input.
Type:Paper/tech report
Article:Version 1