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Elenbaas, Nine 1999 A unified account of binary and ternary stress: considerations from Sentani and Finnish, PhD Dissertation, Utrecht University. (see http://pc0880.germanistik-kunst.uni-marburg.de/~roa/OT-TEXTS-archive/397-06100/)
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    © Nine Elenbaas, 1999. Use of any part of this thesis for any purpose must be acknowledged.

Abstract

This thesis aims at accounting for ternary rhythmic patterns with the analytic tools provided by metrical theory for binary patterns. The approach is based on the typological observation that languages with ternary rhythms tend to combine these with binary rhythms. Essential to the analysis of mixed binary-ternary rhythm is an anti-lapse constraint, defined on the pure grid, which interacts with the standard array of OT constraints on syllable parsing, foot alignment, and quantity-sensitivity. The core of this thesis is formed by analyses of the stress systems of two languages, Sentani (a Papuan language spoken in Irian Jaya, the eastern most province of Indonesia) and Finnish. The stress systems of both languages combine binarity and ternarity. Their central interest to metrical theory resides in the interactions of factors that produce ternarity in a basically binary system, with important consequences for the notion of 'bounded stress system'. In the analysis of the stress systems of Sentani and Finnish, several issues of broader relevance arise, such as the analysis of partial quantity sensitivity; reference to the pure grid versus the bracketed grid; free variation in output patterns; and the notion 'base' in output-output correspondence. Chapter 1 previews the central issues at stake, in the perspective of metrical theory and Optimality Theory, while Chapter 2 spells out theoretical assumptions. Chapters 3 and 4 deal with Sentani. Chapter 3 offers an extensive description of aspects of Sentani phonology and morphology which are relevant for the analysis of the stress system. An OT analysis of Sentani stress is given in Chapter 4, with special attention to rhythmic aspects, such as clash and lapse avoidance and non-finality of stress. This analysis offers an argument that the anti- lapse constraint must be defined on the pure grid. Chapter 5 and Chapter 6 are devoted to Finnish. Chapter 5 gives a brief description of relevant aspects of Finnish phonology and morphology, followed by a description and analysis of stress patterns, focussing on partial quantity sensitivity and variation. Chapter 6 deals with effects of the morphology on stress, vis-a-vis the analysis of simplex words established in Chapter 5. The analysis of morphologically governed variation is based on free rankings of morphology-sensitive constraints on stress placement and output-output correspondence constraints. Chapter 7 summarises the findings of this thesis, and extends the theory to what we could call 'truly ternary' stress systems, by straightforward rerankings of the constraints independently motivated for binary stress systems.


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