A. Research Papers (Peer-Reviewed)
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ItemTop-Down Historical Phonology of Rote-Meto( 2018-06-01)This paper examines the historical phonology of the Rote-Meto languages through a top-down perspective. It describes the sound changes which have taken place between Proto-Malayo-Polynesian and the present-day languages. This reveals a number of shared innovations between Meto and the languages of west Rote, as well as changes shared by the other languages of Rote. Thus, a West Rote-Meto subgroup is identified, as well as a Nuclear Rote subgroup. Within Austronesian, there are phonological innovations shared between Rote-Meto and a number of languages of Timor and surrounding islands. This provides evidence for a Timor-Wetar-Babar subgroup, though this group does not include all languages of Timor.
ItemWest-Central Thailand Pwo Karen Phonology( 2018-06-01)West-Central Thailand Pwo Karen (Karenic, Tibeto-Burman) is one of several mutually unintelligible varieties of Pwo Karen found in Myanmar and Thailand. This paper represents an updated version of a phonological description (Phillips 2000). The study includes a comparison of the phonologies of Burmese Eastern Pwo Karen (Hpa-an and Tavoy) and the Thailand Pwo Karen varieties, West-Central Thailand Pwo Karen and Northern Pwo Karen. While the consonant inventories are similar, the vowel inventories exhibit diphthongization of some nasalized vowels. Also, some former nasalized vowels have lost their nasalization. This denasalization is most pronounced in the Burmese Eastern Pwo Karen varieties. As well, these varieties have either lost the two glottalized tones, or are in the process of losing them, while this process has only begun in West-Central Thailand Pwo Karen. In contrast, all six tones are present in Northern Pwo Karen.
ItemNasal substitution and the limited role of *NC̥ in Malay Dialects( 2018-06-01)This paper discusses the phonological restriction placed on voiceless obstruents following a nasal segment. It has previously been claimed by Malay scholars that such clusters are not permitted to take place in the surface representation in the Malay language. Therefore, nasal substitution is applied to the clusters to prevent them from occurring at the surface level. This does not, however, apply to the clusters that occur root-internally. The discussion of the phonological issue in this analysis is based on the data of three selected dialects of Malay, namely, Perak, Kelantan and Negeri Sembilan. The data reveals that nasal and voiceless obstruent clusters occurring root-internally might undergo a repair strategy, namely, nasal deletion, this means that segments in roots are not fully preserved as previously claimed. Also, the data from these dialects prove that voiced obstruents following a nasal segment at prefix boundaries may also undergo nasal substitution as voiceless obstruents do. The presence of nasal substitution in nasal-plus-voiced obstruent clusters, in particular, shows the limited role played by *NC̥ as it only allows voiceless obstruents to undergo nasal substitution. Hence, it is proposed that the Optimality Theory constraint CRISP-EDGE[σ] plays a role in accounting for both voiced and voiceless obstruent nasal substitution.
ItemThe Barito Linkage Hypothesis, with a Note on the Position of Basap( 2018-06-01)Barito is a large group of languages located primarily along the Barito river, most of Central Kalimantan, western East Kalimantan, and in the case of Malagasy, the island of Madagascar. Traditionally, these languages have been regarded as a subgroup, with all members descended from what one might call Proto-Barito. It has been noted by several authors, however, that Barito languages are only loosely related, and their relationship to each other and to “Proto-Barito” are not universally agreed upon. This paper attempts to define the Barito subgroup with exclusively shared phonological innovations of high quality, but as will be shown, no such innovations exist. Instead, sound changes found in Barito are spread throughout some but not all Barito languages, and no single sound change of any quality can be cited as linking all Barito languages together. It is argued that this distribution of sound changes supports a linkage model, rather than a subgroup model. Furthermore, linkages are defined as evolving from the differentiation of dialects in a chain or network, not from a discrete proto-language. This is interpreted to mean that there was never a Proto-Barito language from which these languages developed. Finally, after presenting the evidence for the Barito linkage hypothesis, the Basap language of northern East Kalimantan is argued, based on a limited set of lexical innovations, to have been a part of an ancient dialect network which stretched from the Barito river in the south to modern Berau regency, in northern East Kalimantan.
ItemThe Loss of Proto-Tibeto-Burman Final Velars in Standard Jinghpaw( 2018-06-01)The aim of this paper is two-fold: to show that the standard dialect of Jinghpaw has irregularly lost several final velars of Proto-Tibeto-Burman based on comparative evidence; and to attempt to show that the lost velars are reconstructable for an earlier stage based on both Standard Jinghpaw-internal and external evidence. Standard Jinghpaw has played an important role in Tibeto-Burman historical-comparative linguistics due to its phonological conservativeness. The loss of final velars is one notable exception, and recognizing this phenomenon enables us to identify and establish more cognate sets between Jinghpaw and closely related languages that provide a basis for a more robust reconstruction of proto-languages. The irregular loss of proto-final velars also provides some implications for the internal classification of Jinghpaw.