• Ling-D: What's a Problem in Phonology?

    (Noam Faust, CNRS Paris)

    In this class, we will ask what falls within the purview of phonological analysis. To what extent an alternation must be robust in a given language for it to be treated "in the phonology"? How do we qualify "robust" in this sense? What about exceptions or variation? We will also look into the interaction of Phonology with Morphology and morpho-syntax. When is it legitimate to speak of "allomorphy", i.e. the existence of two underlying forms? How can phonological alternations be morpheme-specific, or specific to a non-derived environment? To what extent can syntax influence phonology? After laying the foundation of the discussion, we will look into famous and less famous cases from Catalan, Haitian Creole, Surmiran and Modern Hebrew. We will understand, at the end of this course, that the answers to all these questions carry significant consequences not only for the analytic choices of the phonologist, but also for their choice of research topic.

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