M. Pöchtrager (Vienne) - Vowel height and structure

Titre: 
M. Pöchtrager (Vienne) - Vowel height and structure
Date: 
Mercredi 13 Juin 2018 - 10:00 à 12:00
Lieu détaillé: 

Salle 124

Description: 

Voir le résumé sur le site de l'Atelier de phonologie.

Vowel height and structure
 
Basically all versions of Government Phonology/Element Theory share the idea that the element A is a key player in the representation of vowel height. However, this element A has proven to be an eternal trouble maker, in that its behaviour is quite different from other elements. While that difference has been known for a long time, finding a viable explanation for it has turned out to be a more recalcitrant problem, if it has been attempted at all.

In this talk I first want to look at the element A in vowels and propose a particular kind of structure to replace it. This structure allows for a unified account of vowel reduction and also provides a link to stress. Interestingly enough, this structural approach also makes predictions about other vowel-related phenomena, viz. vowel harmony. In particular, it allows for an account of the behaviour and distribution of so-called transparent vowels (vowels that are skipped by harmony), an unexpected result for a theory of vowel height. Better still, the model can also be extended to deal with cases of lenition of consonants.