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Title: The morphology and phonology of English noun-verb stress doublets : base-driven lexical stratification, prefixes and nominalisation
Author: Hurrell, Esther
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2002
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In this thesis I analyse the English ‘stress doublets’ - bisyllabic words which are nouns with initial primary stress, and verbs with final primary stress - in a model of lexical phonology with base-driven stratification (BDLP; Giegerich 1999). The work has two main aims: to give a detailed exploration of this morphological pattern and compare it with related processes; and to test BDLP to see how well it accounts for the data. BDLP is a derivational model which uses rules and constraints. I argue that such models should be explored alongside Optimality Theory, since OT itself must admit the use of rules (LaCharite & Paradis 2000, McMahon 2000b), and does have shortcomings as a morpho-phonological model. I show that the stress doublets are almost all prefixal, and their internal complexity forms a cline from obscurity to compositional transparency. Phonologically, a line can be drawn across this continuum separating forms in which the verb’s initial syllable is stressless from those in which it has secondary stress. This line coincides with a division between the obscured or unproductive prefixations and the most transparent ones. Analysis of the semantic relationships between the nouns and verbs (cf. Clark & Clark 1979) shows another division along the same line: productive prefixations have regular noun-verb relationships, while unproductive or obscured prefixations have irregular noun-verb relationships. So stress doubletting is not one, but two patterns; these are sited on different strata in BDLP. On Stratum 1 Latinate and unproductive prefixal stress-doublets share a common underspecified root with no directional derivation: stress alternation is a matter of foot assignment, nouns being assigned two feet and verbs only one. On Stratum 2, productively prefixed verbs undergo a regular Verb-to-Noun rule. Prefixes are aligned with feet rather than prosodic words (cf. Raffelsiefen 1999). Stress doubletting derives from the different relative prominence between the two feet in nouns and verbs, assigned by the Lexical Category Prominence Rule (Hogg & McCully 1987, McCully 1997).
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available