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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Patterns of reduplication in Kwak’wala Kalmar, Michele


Kwak’wala utilizes reduplication to express at least five different morphemes in the language: distributive, plural, diminutive, 'too much' and repetitive. Each of the reduplicative morphemes surfaces due to a unique ranking of faithfulness and prosodic markedness constraints in the constraint hierarchy. The distributive, plural, diminutive and 'too much' morphemes each employ partial reduplication. The repetitive morpheme is expressed with total reduplication. The distributive morpheme manifests itself in one of two allomorphic prefixes. The surface form is dependent on the shape of the underlying root and a general restriction against heavy syllables in the language. Deletion of a resonant coda or reduction of a vowel will occur if a resulting syllable would otherwise surface as more than one mora in weight. The locus of this change is determined by a distinctly ranked base-reduplicant correspondence constraint. Interestingly, un-reduplicated forms only ever reduce a full vowel as a means of repairing an over-weight syllable, while the base of a reduplicated form deletes the resonant. This is unexpected given the traditional definition of input-output faithfulness (McCarthy & Prince, 1993). In the traditional view, the base of reduplicated forms is the same string as the stem in un-reduplicated forms. Therefore, the two are expected to behave in a similar fashion in terms of repair mechanisms. The Kwak’wala data does not bear this out. Rather, I adopt the definition of existential input-output faithfulness (Struijke, 1998, 2000), where the "output" is redefined as the entire reduplicated form, the base and the reduplicant. Here, an input segment must surface somewhere, but anywhere, in the output to satisfy faithfulness. In this way, the behaviour of roots in un-reduplicated forms and with the distributive morpheme is accounted for. The plural, diminutive and 'too much' morphemes each contain a fixed vowel. I account for the locus, size, and shape of the morphemes by appealing to individual ranking of base-reduplicant correspondence constraints which govern each reduplicative morpheme separately. I determine that the fixed vowels of the plural and diminutive reduplicants are specified in the underlying representation. The fixed vowel of the 'too much' morpheme, however, arises as least marked segment. Repetitive reduplication is expressed through total reduplication. Again, this is possible in a language with partial reduplication due to a unique position in the constraint hierarchy of the base-reduplication correspondence constraints responsible for this particular morpheme. They are ranked above any of the markedness constraints which were responsible for truncating the partial reduplicants, allowing total reduplication to surface.

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