Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Show Summary Details
More options …

Journal of African Languages and Linguistics

Ed. by Ameka, Felix K. / Amha, Azeb

2 Issues per year

IMPACT FACTOR 2016: 0.071
5-year IMPACT FACTOR: 0.171

CiteScore 2016: 0.33

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2016: 0.159
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2016: 1.119

See all formats and pricing
More options …
Volume 34, Issue 1


Dagbani tongue-root harmony: triggers, targets and blockers

Fusheini Hudu
Published Online: 2013-05-08 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jall-2013-0002


This paper describes advanced tongue-root [ATR] harmony in Dagbani, a Gur language of Ghana, focusing on three distinct segments: triggers, targets, and blockers of [+ATR] harmony. Dagbani has a bidirectional [ATR] harmony, with [+ATR] as the dominant value. A root [i] triggers a left-to-right harmony targeting vowels in suffixes and clitics while the mid vowels [e, o] trigger a right-to-left direction of harmony targeting root vowels. There are two restrictions on harmony. First, a height similarity condition restricts harmony to a trigger and target that are both [+high] or [−high]. Second, a class of opaque consonants [l, ɾ, s] block the spread of [+ATR] between /i/ and an eligible vowel target. However, the opacity is unidirectional as the coronals do not block a right-to-left harmony. The paper addresses the controversy on whether such opacity effects exist in harmony patterns and discusses other issues of general theoretical interest in harmony patterns, such as parasitic harmony and the position of low vowels in [ATR] harmony.

Keywords: Dagbani; ATR harmony; bidirectionality; consonant opacity

About the article

Linguistics Department, University of Ghana

Published Online: 2013-05-08

Published in Print: 2013-05-10

Citation Information: Journal of African Languages and Linguistics, Volume 34, Issue 1, Pages 47–73, ISSN (Online) 1613-3811, ISSN (Print) 0167-6164, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/jall-2013-0002.

Export Citation

©[2013] by Walter de Gruyter Berlin Boston. Copyright Clearance Center

Citing Articles

Here you can find all Crossref-listed publications in which this article is cited. If you would like to receive automatic email messages as soon as this article is cited in other publications, simply activate the “Citation Alert” on the top of this page.

W. G. Bennett
South African Journal of African Languages, 2014, Volume 34, Number 2, Page 115

Comments (0)

Please log in or register to comment.
Log in