TitleThe Typology of Rounding Harmony: An Optimality Theoretic Approach
NameKaun, Abigail Rhoades (Author), University of California, Los Angeles,
Grammar, Comparative and general--Vowel harmony
DescriptionThis thesis explores the typology of rounding harmony within the framework of optimality theory. A systematic survey of the range of attested rounding harmony phenomena is presented and an analysis of this typology is proposed which invokes constraints based on perceptual and articulatory principles. A central element of the theory advanced here is the claim that vowel harmony is perceptually-motivated. Harmony serves to extend the duration of phonetic information which is phonologically important (i.e. distinctive), but which is transmitted by means of relatively subtle acoustic cues. Evidence from phonetic studies of vowel articulation and vowel perception is cited in support of the comprehensive phonological analysis presented here. It is demonstrated that the substantive account of the typology of rounding harmony made possible within optimality theory provides a very close fit with the observed typological facts, whereas purely formal, representationally-based phonological theories allow for no principled or adequately restrictive account of this range of facts.
CollectionRutgers Optimality Archive
Organization NameRutgers, The State University of New Jersey
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work