Reduplication in Rotuman: A curious case of emergent unmarkedness

Amber Blenkiron, John Alderete

Abstract:

This article gives a comprehensive analysis of reduplication in Rotuman (Oceanic). The main reduplication shape is a heavy syllable prefix (e.g., CVC-, CVV-), which we document with a list of 847 reduplicated words and native speaker elicitation. We argue that the heavy syllable shape is predicted in large part by the phonology of the incomplete phase, a system-wide generalization also requiring heavy syllables. The apparent markedness of the reduplicant thus follows from the phonology of phase and other independently motivated constraints for anti-gemination, under-application, and prosodic faithfulness effects.

Keywords:  reduplication, minimal word, generalized templates, Rotuman, Austronesian

Downloads:  link to the paper, data supplement

Full citation: Blenkiron, Amber and John Alderete. 2015. Reduplication in Rotuman: A curious case of emergent unmarkedness. In Yuchau Hsiao and Lian-Hee Wee (eds.), Capturing phonological shades within and across languages, pp. 266-290. Newcastle: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.