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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/32899

Title: Hiatus and Hiatus Resolution in Québécois French
Authors: St-Amand, Anne-Bridget
Advisor: Dresher, B. Elan
Department: Linguistics
Keywords: Phonology
Québécois French
Issue Date: 31-Aug-2012
Abstract: This thesis is about vowel-vowel sequences across word boundaries in Québécois French (QF). QF has a number of phonological processes that seem motivated by hiatus avoidance, yet hiatus is tolerated in many instances as well. This research is about why hiatus is tolerated in QF, why it is avoided, and what grammatical models can account for the relevant processes. My work is intended as a contribution to the study of how best to account for variation and opacity within current grammatical models, and as a contribution to the study of the QF vowel system. The data are drawn from a corpus constructed from recordings of web extras for a Québécois reality television series. The data primarily come from a single speaker to ensure that any variation in the data truly represents intra-grammar variation, but data from other speakers are used as safeguard. Through the use of quantitative data as a means of investigating problems in theoretical phonology, the thesis is also meant to contribute to methodological discussions and discussions about the relationship between phonetics and phonology. I propose that the patterns of hiatus and hiatus resolution in QF are best modeled through three sets of constraints organized in a serial manner. This proposal is based on the claims that the data show evidence for an anti-hiatus constraint, for feature-based analysis, for stochastic modeling, and for multiple levels. The proposed model combines insights from Stochastic Optimality Theory (Boersma & Hayes 2001), multi-level Optimality Theory (Kiparsky 2000, 2010; Rubach 2000), and the Contrastivist Hypothesis (Dresher & Rice 2002, Dresher 2009, Hall 2007). Within the model, the first constraint set targets the smallest prosodic constituents and produces categorical outputs, the second applies to intermediate-sized constituents and can model optionality, and the third handles the largest prosodic constituents and produces complex patterns of variability.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/32899
Appears in Collections:Doctoral

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