Kolloquien  |  Linguistik

FB Kolloquium: Word initial rhotic avoidance: a typological survey

Donnerstag, 09. Januar 2020
11:45 – 13:15 Uhr

G 307

FB Linguistik

Laurence Labrune (Université Bordeaux Montaigne)

In many languages of the world, rhotic consonants tend not to occur in the initial position of words. This talk will address this issue of word initial rhotic avoidance (henceforth WIRA) from a typological point of view. The first aim of this study is to document WIRA cross- linguistically, based on the examination of a sample of 200 languages designed by the WALS (Dryer and Haspelmath 2013). This set of 200 languages has been surveyed in order to reveal rhotic (and more generally liquid) phonotactic patterns in relation to word initial avoidance. On the basis of this survey, two types of WIRA have been identified: 1) phonological, or emic WIRA; and 2) phonetic, or etic WIRA.