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Re: A bunch of phonological questions

From:Paul Roser <pkroser@...>
Date:Thursday, September 22, 2005, 19:58
On Wed, 21 Sep 2005 20:31:30 +0300, John Vertical
<johnvertical@...> wrote:

>Paul Roser wrote: >> Lateral release, like nasal release, applies to non-affricated >> stops that precede laterals (or nasals) and are *not* released >> prior to the lateral or nasal articulation. By definition a >> lateral affricate would have lateral release. > > Hmm, that's kinda ... too simple. So if [_l] xor [_n] are not > applicable to any vowels that are not followed by a (homorganic? > is that a requisite too?) lateral xor nasal, why is there a need > for two different diacritics? It's starting to seem to me that > just one release diacritic (say, $) would be enough, one that > means "not released independently": >/t_h/ = /t$h/ >/t_ll/ = /t$l/ >/t_nn/ = /t$n/ >/ts)/ = /t$s/ >/tK)/ = /t$K/ >/t_} / = /t$ /
There *is* a generic unreleased diacritic, a little right-angle bracket sort of thing, but I don't think it's ever used with affricates /ts), tK)/ or with aspiration /t_h/. I'm not sure what the last one you list, /t_}/, is supposed to be... IMO you *can* use the unreleased diacritic interchangeably with either the nasal- or lateral-release diacritics (if the following nasal or lateral were homorganic). I think nasal/lateral release only apply to stops, and only if the sequence is homorganic (though lateral release as a diacritic has sometimes also been used to indicate things like lateralized taps or fricatives - though I can't recall seeing the nasal release diacritic used that way). Using nasal or lateral release with vowels doesn't make sense to me - 'release' implies the closure of a stop, and there is no closure involved in vowel production.
> Yes, that does help. I was asking this because I was wondering > if coronal affricates were the most common for POA reasons or > because they're sibilant affricates. But if /tK)/ is not a > sibilant, I guess it's the POA...
Crosslinguistically I think coronal affricates /ts, tS/ are most common for two reasons - one, that coronals tend to have more types of articulations than other POAs -- for instance, if a language has stops, nasals, laterals, trills, & fricatives, it probably has all of those in the coronal region and probably lacks at least some of them in the peripheral regions (no language has distinctive labial laterals, very very few have labial or dorsal trills or dorsal laterals), this being partly due to the greater flexibility of articulators in the coronal region -- and two, central fricatives /s, S/ are more pervasive than lateral fricatives (which is probably tied to an ease of production factor - central fricatives being easier to produce than laterals). Off the top of my head, I can't think of a single language that has /K/ that does not also have either /s/ or /S/, and if a language has a lateral affricate /tK)/ it almost certainly also has /ts)/ & /s/ (or /tS)/ & /S/). -Bfowol