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Title:Representational complexity in syllable structure and its consequences for Gen and Con
Authors:Jennifer L. Smith
Comment:Submitted to M. Krämer, P. Bye, and S. Blaho, eds., 'Freedom of Analysis?'. Manuscript date: January 2006.
Abstract:The papers in this collection all address some aspect of the following question: In a phonological model developed within the framework of Optimality Theory (Prince and Smolensky 2004), what restrictions, if any, should be placed on Gen, the function that generates a candidate set from a given input form? Here, it is shown that restrictions on Gen must not be considered in isolation; their effects on Con, the constraint set, must be taken into account as well. In particular, allowing Gen a greater degree of freedom in generating subsyllabic structure helps maintain a more restrictive, functionally grounded constraint set.

After a background discussion of the relationship between representational complexity and freedom of analysis, this paper presents an explicit set of representational assumptions about subsyllabic structure (sec. 2) and shows that representational complexity has implications for Con as well as for Gen, in the context of a sonority-based analysis of liquid-specific onset restrictions (sec. 3). Additional syllabification-related predictions of the version of Gen presented here are also considered (sec. 4).
Type:Paper/tech report
Area/Keywords:Phonology,Formal Analysis
Article:Version 1