13_unity_of_languages - The Unity of Languages 1...

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The Unity of Languages 1 Prerequisites to the discovery of language universals Terminology and descriptive framework for language description Dictionaries and grammars of a large number of languages 2 Some language universals Types of universals: i) Absolute non-implicational universals: True in every language ii) Non-implicational universal tendencies: True in most languages iii) Absolute implicational universals: If a language has one thing, it always has another iv) Implicational universal tendencies: If a language has one thing, it is likely to have another 2.1 Absolute non-implicational universals Markedness universals: Universals concerning relationship of expectedness, likelihood, preference, and structural/formal simplicity of linguistic features. Other universals: Categories present in every language. 2.1.1 Phonology Markedness universals Unmarked Marked Unaspirated stops Aspirated stops Voiceless obstruents Voiced obstruents Voiced sonorants Voiceless sonorants Labiodental fricatives Bilabial fricatives Oral vowels Nasalized vowels Back rounded vowels Back unrounded vowels Front unrounded vowels Front rounded vowels Characteristics of unmarked categories: a. Greater crosslinguistic frequency i. All languages have voiceless stops ii. Many languages (e.g., Hawaiian) lack voiced stops b. Greater frequency within a language i. In Moran’s Turkish dictionary, the [ ] (high back unrounded vowel) section is 6 pages long ii. The [i] section is 53 pages long. c. Less restricted context of occurrence i. In English, coronal consonants can occur following any vowel (unrestricted occurrence of unmarked category) ii. Noncoronal consonants are not allowed following [aw] (restricted occurrence of marked category) d. Presence in context where marked categories are absent i. In Korean, stops may be aspirated, unaspirated, or glottalized at the beginning of a syllable. ii. At the end of a syllable, all Korean stops are unaspirated (unmarked category) e. Greater number of variants i. In certain Sicilian dialects, there are five oral vowels [i, e, a , o, u] (unmarked category) ii. There are only three nasalized vowels [ ±² , a ²³ u ² ] f. Simpler or lesser form i. Simple stops (unmarked) are articulated by forming a closure somewhere in the oral cavity ii. Ejectives (marked) are articulated by forming a closure
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This note was uploaded on 04/07/2008 for the course ENG 01 taught by Professor Orgun during the Winter '08 term at UC Davis.

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13_unity_of_languages - The Unity of Languages 1...

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