This paper applies the gestural alignment schema proposed by Gafos (2002), which translates the basic principles of Articulatory Phonology into Optimality Theoretic terms, to unstressed vowel devoicing in Andean Spanish. This approach successfully models the variable and gradient nature of devoicing in this dialect and also accounts for its lack of rate dependence. High rates of devoicing for the mid-vowel /e/ are attributed to its articulatory similarity to frequently occurring coronal consonants. The possibility that a high rate of devoicing for all vowels followed by coda /s/ results from a syllable position effect on the characteristics of syllable-final /s/ is also discussed.
Proceedings of the 26th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics
edited by Charles B. Chang and Hannah J. Haynie
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