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Bookmark and Share Paper 3318

Loanword Adaptation in Québec French: Evidence for Weighted Scalar Constraints
Brian Hsu and Karen Jesney
249-258 (complete paper or proceedings contents)


Implicational patterns in the adaptation of marked structures across loanword classes suggest that the lexicon is organized into a core-periphery structure of nested lexical strata. Previous analyses within Optimality Theory account for stratum-sensitivity via the proliferation of faithfulness constraints indexed to individual strata (e.g., Itô and Mester 1995, 1999). However, certain rankings of these constraints can subvert the basic implicational patterns, requiring metaconditions to be imposed on faithfulness rankings. This paper provides a quantitative treatment of the core-periphery structure in Québec French loanwords (Roy 1992), and argues that the attested patterns are best accounted for through scaling of weighted constraint violations within Harmonic Grammar. The data can be successfully modeled if faithfulness violations are adjusted by a consistent scaling factor that increases with distance from the core. This approach eliminates the need for constraint indexation, and thus the need for ranking metaconditions.

Published in

Proceedings of the 34th West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics
edited by Aaron Kaplan, Abby Kaplan, Miranda K. McCarvel, and Edward J. Rubin
Table of contents
Printed edition: $410.00