Phonology: Analysis and Theory

Phonology: Analysis and Theory

Phonology: Analysis and Theory

Phonology: Analysis and Theory

Synopsis

This textbook is a clear and concise introduction to phonology that assumes no prior knowledge and provides an overall view of the field which can be covered within a year. It also does not confine itself to any specific theoretical approach. Each chapter focuses on a particular set of theoretical issues including segments, syllables, feet, and phonological processing. Gussmann explores these areas using data drawn from a variety of languages including English, Icelandic, Russian, Irish, Finnish, Turkish, and others.

Excerpt

This book is intended as an introduction to phonology for students who have not previously been exposed to this area of linguistics. It contains material which can be covered within one academic year and provides guides for extensive further study. While it does not presuppose any knowledge of phonology, it does assume prior familiarity with the basic terminology of articulatory phonetics and some background in general linguistics. For this reason notions such as morpheme or spirant are not explained here – readers needing assistance with such terms should consult other sources, such as, for example, Trask (1996).

Because the objective of the book is to provide a manageable introduction to the field it has been necessary to exercise maximal restraint as far as the issues covered are concerned. As is well-known, phonology, just like any other branch of linguistics, is not a uniform discipline. Quite conversely, the field is theoretically vibrant, with several substantially different models currently vying for the dominant position, a situation which confuses not only the beginner student. It has been decided that introducing all or even a few of these models would amount to a fairly superficial survey of different techniques of description, or would require a book much broader in scope (and in length). It is quite unlikely that a textbook of that sort could be used by the introductory student with much profit, and a course based on it would last much longer than one year. Assuming that students do not live by phonology alone, there is only so much that can be covered within a single course. For these reasons a different perspective has been adopted.

Leaving aside the significant theoretical variation among different phonological models, it is possible to identify a body of data that most or perhaps all models would regard as calling for a phonological description. These are the issues that would need to be described in any model, even if there is a measure of disagreement concerning some specific sets of data. In this book we have adopted the view that the student should try and see what qualifies as a phonological issue and how it may be interpreted. Thus we do not set off by assuming that we know what the problem is, and define our task as basically capturing the problem in terms of some theory. Obviously, phonology means making theoretical assumptions and . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.