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Share Paper 1435

Phonetic Variation and Phonological Theory: German Fricative Voicing
Jill Beckman, Michael Jessen, and Catherine Ringen
76-86 (complete paper or proceedings contents)


This paper reports on the result of an experiment that was designed to test the different predictions of two phonological analyses of German fricative voicing, one that actively bans voicing in coda position, and one that preferentially preserves voicing in presonorant position. In the experiment, native speakers pronounced words such as gruslig 'spooky' and fasrig 'fibrous', crucial cases where an underlying voiced fricative occurs before a sonorant consonant, and where [zl] and [zr] are not possible onsets. The authors argue that only the positional faithfulness analysis is consistent with their experimental findings, which include considerable variation; coda devoicing cannot account for the full range of data attested.

Published in

Proceedings of the 25th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics
edited by Donald Baumer, David Montero, and Michael Scanlon
Table of contents
Printed edition: $375.00