A Computational Phonology of Russian (Paperback)
Dissertation.com, 9781581121780, 428pp.
Publication Date: March 15, 2003
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This dissertation provides a coherent, synchronic, broad-coverage, generative phonology of Russian. I test the grammar empirically in a number of ways to determine its goodness of fit to Russian. In taking this approach, I aim to avoid making untested (or even incoherent) generalizations based on only a handful of examples. In most cases, the tests show that there are exceptions to the theory, but at least we know what the exceptions are, a baseline is set against which future theories can be measured, and in most cases the percentage of exceptional cases is reduced to below 5%. The principal theoretical outcomes of the work are as follows. First, I show that all of the phonological or morphophonological processes reviewed can be described by a grammar no more powerful than context-free. Secondly, I exploit probabilistic constraints in the syllable structure grammar to explain why constraints on word-marginal onsets and codas are weaker than on word-internal onsets and codas. I argue that the features ]/- initial] and ]/- final], and extraprosodicity, are unnecessary for this purpose.