A. Vaxman (UConn) Parameter dependencies for accent assignment in typological perspective
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Parameter dependencies for accent assignment in typological perspective
Metrical stress theories tend to be excessively powerful. Assuming separation of accent (“primary stress”) from rhythm (“non-primary stress”), this talk introduces a specific set of binary parameters, augmented with parameter dependencies and ordering, and discusses how this system successfully generates all, and only, the attested phonological accent languages. The proposed parameter system forms a basic component of the Scales-and-Parameters (S&P) grammar (Vaxman 2016). Parameter space reduction in S&P is due to dependencies holding among certain parameters. In particular, the Accent Locality Dependency formally captures a broad descriptive generalization that severely restricts possible accent locations in weight-sensitive systems with final extrametricality. The generalization receives strong empirical support from tests against data in StressTyp (the largest-to-date typological database of stress patterns) and in the existing literature. The resulting parameter system, with its dependencies and a universal order of parameter setting, leads to an algorithm for generation of accentual languages (sets of accent patterns). An exhaustive parametric typology reveals that the generated parameter space accurately fits the set of attested phonological accent languages, which amounts to descriptive adequacy. Importantly, although the S&P parameter system, by itself, is limited to this class of languages, augmenting the system with a component containing novel types of weight scales allows for a uniform account of accent assignment in phonological, lexical and mixed accent languages in terms of a single accentual grammar.