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Title:Optimality Theory and the Generative Complexity of Contraint Violability
Authors:Robert Frank, Giorgio Satta
Abstract:It has been argued that rule-based phonological descriptions can

uniformly be expressed as mappings carried out by finite-state

transducers, and therefore fall within the class of rational

relations. If this property of generative capacity is an empirically

correct characterization of phonological mappings, it should hold of

any sufficiently restrictive theory of phonology, whether it utilizes

constraints or rewrite rules. In this paper, we investigate the

conditions under which the phonological descriptions that are possible

within the view of constraint interaction embodied in Optimality

Theory (Prince and Smolensky 1993) remain within the class of rational

relations. We show that this is true when GEN is itself a

rational relation, and each of the constraints distinguishes among

finitely many regular sets of candidates.
Type:Paper/tech report
Article:Version 1