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University of Massachusetts Amherst

Morphology

2002

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Full-Text Articles in Arts and Humanities

On Targeted Constraints And Cluster Simplification, John J. Mccarthy Jan 2002

On Targeted Constraints And Cluster Simplification, John J. Mccarthy

Linguistics Department Faculty Publication Series

In his article 'Consonant cluster neutralisation and targeted constraints', Wilson (2001) proposes a far-reaching revision of Optimality Theory to accommodate targeted constraints, which compare candidates differing only in certain specific ways. Targeted constraints, it is argued, can explain why cluster-simplification processes affect the first member of a cluster but never the more marked member of a cluster. In this remark, I show that this argument encounters difficulties once it has been embedded in a fuller picture of constraint interaction. Some general properties of the targeted-constraints model are also discussed.


Comparative Markedness (Long Version), John J. Mccarthy Jan 2002

Comparative Markedness (Long Version), John J. Mccarthy

Linguistics Department Faculty Publication Series

The markedness constraints of classic Optimality Theory assign violation-marks to output candidates without reference to the input or to other candidates. This paper explores an alternative conception of markedness that is comparative: markedness constraints compare the candidate under evaluation with another candidate, the most faithful one. Comparative constraints distinguish two situations: the candidate under evaluation contains an instance of a marked structure that is also present in the fully-faithful candidate; or the candidate under evaluation contains an instance of a marked structure that is not present in the fully faithful candidate. The empirical consequences of comparative markedness are explored, including ...