Consonant gemination in West Greenlandic - Alex Stefanelli
The goal of this presentation is to propose a unified description of consonant gemination in West Greenlandic. There are three main facets to consider:
1. Weight-based restrictions on consonant features
2. Synchronic consonant gemination processes
3. Stem- and affix-conditioned allomorphy affecting these processesTo begin, all geminate consonants excepting nasals must be voiceless. Additionally, alternation patterns between singleton fricatives and geminate stops emerge from the two processes under consideration: regressive assimilation and stem-internal gemination. Regressive assimilation occurs when two consonants come into contact across a morpheme boundary, resulting in a geminate with the features of only the second consonant. Consider kamik ‘boot’ combined with the affix -taaq ‘new’: kamittaaq. Stem-internal gemination affects a large class of nouns where a non-final consonant is geminated to compensate for the deletion of stem material following affixation. For example, imaq ‘sea’ undergoes deletion of stem-final q when pluralized with -t: immat ‘seas’. Stem and affix allomorphy influence whether this process occurs. I assume a moraic analysis of compensatory lengthening and draw from work on the typology of gemination processes to explain the facts described here. Finally, I outline an Optimality Theoretic interpretation of the interaction and relative importance of these phenomena.