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Title:Taking a Free Ride in Morphophonemic Learning
Authors:John J. McCarthy
Comment:To appear in Catalan Journal of Linguistics 4 (special issue on Phonology in Morphology, edited by Maria-Rosa Lloret and Jesús Jiménez)
Abstract:As language learners begin to analyze morphologically complex words, they face the problem of projecting underlying representations from the morphophonemic alternations that they observe. Research on learnability in Optimality Theory has started to address this problem, and this article deals with one aspect of it. When alternation data tell the learner that some surface [B]s are derived fromunderlying /A/s, the learner must sometimes generalize by deriving *all* surface [B]s, even nonalternating ones, from /A/s. An adequate learning theory must therefore incorporate a procedure that allows nonalternating [B]s to take a 'free ride' on the /A/ -> [B] unfaithful map.
Type:Paper/tech report
Area/Keywords:Learnability, Phonology
Article:Version 1