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Morphological conditioning of phonological regularization

Maria Gouskova and Tal Linzen
From the journal The Linguistic Review

Abstract

We analyze three types of cases in which exceptional morphemes become regular in the presence of other morphemes (regularization effects). Vowel deletion in some Russian prepositions depends on the root that follows the preposition and also on the suffix that follows the root. In Japanese, dominant suffixes assign an accentual pattern to accented roots, but in Slovenian, dominance is conditional – revoked by another suffix. Finally, Tagalog and Dutch loanwords can contain non-native segments, except when certain affixes are present. We account for these phenomena in a new constraint-based framework, Lexical MaxEnt with regularization factors. In this framework, constraint weights are rescaled for exceptional morphemes, and some affixes carry regularization factors that reduce or cancel rescaling. We argue that regularization is a property of morphemes rather than whole words, and that it follows from how these morphemes are combined in the grammar rather than from whole-word storage in the lexicon.

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