Abstract

We attempt to demonstrate that the substitution of a foreign segment in the borrowings of our database, which includes 14,350 segmental malformations from French and English loanwords in eight distinct languages, involves its replacement by a single native segment. This tendency is so strong in our database as to be virtually exceptionless, except where nasal vowels are concerned. These vowels are systematically adapted as an oral vowel followed by a nasal consonant (VN), a process we call UNPACKING. We document this process and suggest that it results from the fact that contrastive nasal vowels are fundamentally biphonemic, that is they have two root nodes. The influence of orthography is refuted, and a number of apparent counterexamples where segments other than nasal vowels seem to unpack are reanalyzed in terms of independent native processes.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1535-0665
Print ISSN
0097-8507
Pages
pp. 324-357
Launched on MUSE
2015-04-01
Open Access
No
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