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Title: Optimality theory and historical phonology: an example from nasal harmony in Mundurukú
Other Titles: Teoria da otimalidade e fonologia histórica: um exemplo da harmonia nasal em Mundurukú
metadata.dc.creator: PICANÇO, Gessiane Lobato
Keywords: Fonologia
Fonologia diacrônica
Harmonia nasal
Mudança de som
Teoria da otimidade
Índios Munduruku
Amazônia brasileira
Issue Date: 2013
Citation: PICANÇO, Gessiane. Optimality theory and historical phonology: an example from nasal harmony in Mundurukú. Alfa: Revista de Lingüística (São José Rio Preto), São Paulo, v. 57, n. 1, p. 257-274, 2013. Disponível em: <>. Acesso em: 27 mar. 2015. <>.
Abstract: This paper offers an account of diachronic changes in nasal harmony in Mundurukú, a Tupian language from Brazil. It attempts to show that the Optimality Theory provides new ways of accounting for sound change, other than constraint re-ranking. A comparison of Mundurukú and Kuruaya's modern systems points out that the source system, Proto-Mundurukú, had similar properties to those currently observed in Kuruaya. In particular, nasal spread targets were voiced stops and sonorants, whereas voiceless obstruents were transparent. This system was developed into another in Pre-Mundurukú, because new contrasts were introduced in the language, turning obstruents into opaque segments, thus blocking nasalization. Formal OT account of both cases relies on restricting harmony constraints, as shown by the relative chronology that gave rise to Mundurukú's modern system. In addition, this study discusses the consequences of this change to synchronic grammar, and how it explains the process' irregularities.
ISSN: 1981-5794
Appears in Collections:Artigos Científicos - FALE/ILC

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