Přednáška: German articles and Phase space

17. 5. 2023

prof. Tobias Scheer

Zveme Vás na přednášku významného fonologa prof. Tobiase Scheera (Universita Nice-Sophia Antipolis), která se uskuteční pátek 2. června 2023 od 13 hod. v posluchárně v D2TYM7 nebo online zde.

Abstrakt přednášky:

Like in many other languages, the sequence preposition + article allows for short forms of the article in German. Thus auf dem / auf'm, für das / für's, nach dem / nach'm etc. But not for the form die Nom,Acc of fem & pl: auf die / *auf'??. This and other related issues are examined. It is argued that short forms are the result of cliticization, and cliticization means that the items in question lose their stand-alone status, i.e. do not occur in their own phase anymore, but rather in the same phase as their host. The elimination of their phase also eliminates the extra syllabic space that comes with phases: phases are phonologically marked with an empty CV unit at their left edge. Dem, den, das are lexically dem, den, das where superscript indicates floating items, i.e. ones that are not associated to syllabic structure. They can land on the extra CV when the article is a phase by itself CV[auf] CV[dem], but remain afloat when it is cliticized CV[auf dem].

The same workings are shown to govern the indef. article ein, which has the additional virtue of having super-short forms: um einen Sturm geht's (long), um 'nen Sturm geht's (short), um'n Sturm geht's (super-short). Einen identifies as ei-n-en (-n- marking indefiniteness) and each morpheme may be cliticized along the ways described above.

The talk also examines syntactic, semantic and other restrictions on short forms.

Tobias Scheer & Heather Newell

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