Phonotactic knowledge and phonetically unnatural classes: The plain uvular in Cochabamba Quechua

Gillian Gallagher

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    Abstract

    While many phonological patterns target classes of sounds that can be defined phonetically, a large number of patterns in descriptive grammars involve sounds that cannot be easily characterised in phonetic terms. This finding suggests that phonological patterns themselves must be taken into account when learning phonological representations, and that phonological classes may emerge in learning from both phonetic factors (bottom-up) and phonological patterns (top-down). The current work presents a case of a phonetically unnatural class in South Bolivian Quechua that is active in the phonology of the language, and provides experimental support that this class is referred to by speakers' grammars. While many cases of phonetically unnatural classes have been documented in descriptions of language patterns, in most cases there is little or no evidence that these patterns or classes are represented by speakers as they are described by linguists.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)37-60
    Number of pages24
    JournalPhonology
    Volume36
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Feb 1 2019

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Language and Linguistics
    • Linguistics and Language

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