The Typology of Featural Affixes - Summer Semester 2017

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Thursday 17:15-18:45 Room H1 5.16

Featural affixes are affixes which surface as phonological feature(s) of segments of the base word. This comprises instances of German umlaut (Wiese 1994, Klein 2000) as in the plural of Bruder ‘brother’ ˜ Brüder ‘brothers’ where plural is expressed by fronting, i.e. the phonological feature [-back] on the stressed vowel, 1st person singular in Texistepec Popoluca verbs which is expressed by nasalizing the initial consonant of a verb (dastah ‘to dig’ ˜ nastah ‘I dig’, Reilly 2002), but also tonal and moraic affixes (e.g. verbal nouns in Hausa formed by lengthening/adding a mora to a final vowel, gudù ‘walk’ ˜ gudù: ‘walking’, (Schuh 1989). While featural affixation is a peripheral phenomenon in many European languages, it is one of the most frequent affixation patterns crosslinguistically (cf. the survey in Zimmermann and Trommer 2013), pervasive in many language families (e.g. consonant mutation in Celtic, cf. Iosad 2012, and morphological tone in Bantu, Hyman and Kisseberth 1998), and for some languages the major and fully productive type of morphological exponence (e.g. Dinka, Andersen 1995). In this course we discuss the crosslinguistic inventory of featural affixes, their phonological and morphological properties, as well as systematic parallels and differences to segmental morphology.



Jochen Trommer
Institut für Linguistik
Universität Leipzig

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