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41 - English Phonetics, Phonology, Morphophonology

    Table of contents
    1. 1. topics
    2. 2. suggested readings


    1. Phonetics of English
      The speech organs and their role in the articulation of English sounds. Classification of sounds on an articulatory basis.
    2. Phonological classification of sounds
      Natural classes, opposition, features, neutralization, alternation.
    3. Accents of English
      A comparison of two phonological phenomena in two or more accents of English.
    4. Structuralist phonology
      The taxonomic model and its shortcomings. Problems with the phonemehood of the velar nasal.
    5. Classical generative phonology
      The SPE model. Underlying vs. surface forms. Rule formalism. Treatment of vowel shift and velar softening in this framework. The “powerfulness” vs. “naturalness” controversy.
    6. Current phonological theory
      Post-SPE models: lexical, autosegmental, government phonology, optimality theory. Treatment of an English phenomenon in one of these frameworks (chosen by the candidate).
    7. The English vowel system
      Underlying elements (“phonemes”). Vocalic contrasts. The problem of “vowel shift”. Quantity or quality (tenseness or length)?
    8. The English syllable
      Its status in phonology. Its buildup. Syllabification, ambisyllabicity. Sonority. Phonotactics: restrictions on onsets and codas, peaks and rhymes.
    9. English word stress
      Stress assignment rules, their relation to morphology and syntactic function (word class). Degrees of stress within the word. Vowel reduction.
    10. English compound stress and phrasal stress
      Distinction of compound and phrase. Prosodic hierarchy. The treatment of stress in linear (SPE) and metrical phonology.
    11. English intonation
      Tonality, tonicity, tone. Pitch contours. Neutral vs. nonneutral, focusing, emphasis, contrast. Relationship with syntax.
    12. The relationship of morphology and phonology
      The “common underlier” problem. Irregularity and suppletivism. Free and bound. Lexical storage vs. productive formation, the phonological visibility of morphological domains.

    suggested readings

    • Chomsky, Noam and Morris Halle. 1968. The Sound Pattern of English. New York: Harper & Row.
    • Durand, Jacques. 1990. Generative and Nonlinear Phonology. Harlow: Longman.
    • Ewen, Colin J. and Harry van der Hulst. 2001. The Phonological Structure of Words. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    • Gimson, Alfred C. 1980. An Introduction to the Pronunciation of English (3rd ed.). London: Edward Arnold.
    • Harris, John. 1994. English Sound Structure. Oxford: Blackwell.
    • Kager, René. 1999. Optimality Theory. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    • Ladefoged, Peter. A course in phonetics. Orlando: Harcourt Brace. (2nd ed. 1982, 3rd ed. 1993, 4th ed. 2001, 5th ed. Boston: Thomson/Wadsworth 2006.)
    • Lass, Roger. 1984. Phonology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    • Spencer, Andrew. 1991. Morphological Theory. Oxford: Blackwell.
    • Wells, John C. 2006. English Intonation: An Introduction. New York: Cambridge University Press.
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