TAC Meera 2016

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby voron » 2016-06-26, 0:09

About the usefulness of Eastern Arabic, it is a sad point but its usefulness has increased now that a lot of Syrians have fled their homes and resided in Europe and elsewhere. In particular, in some quarters of Istanbul most of the population are Syrians and for those who live and work there it's the number one language to learn.

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby Meera » 2016-06-26, 3:12

Yeah I agree!
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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby Meera » 2016-07-12, 14:48

So my linguistics class started and so far it is going okay although I am a little confused. There is just so many terms. :oops:
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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby vijayjohn » 2016-07-12, 16:10

You're taking a linguistics class?! :shock: I never knew that! Can I help? :D

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby OldBoring » 2016-07-12, 22:02

But if you help her, she will eventually disagree with you.

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby vijayjohn » 2016-07-12, 23:02

I never said, "Can I help you forever?" :twisted:

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby Meera » 2016-07-14, 2:25

vijayjohn wrote:You're taking a linguistics class?! :shock: I never knew that! Can I help? :D


yes please :oops:
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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby vijayjohn » 2016-07-14, 2:34

Meera wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:You're taking a linguistics class?! :shock: I never knew that! Can I help? :D


yes please :oops:

Okay! What can I help with? Do you have any specific questions? IIRC, you posted something about learning about phonology and stuff like phonemes and allophones. Are you trying to figure out what the difference is between those two things? It's okay, everybody struggles with that at first; I did, too. :)

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby Meera » 2016-07-21, 5:24

vijayjohn wrote:
Meera wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:You're taking a linguistics class?! :shock: I never knew that! Can I help? :D


yes please :oops:

Okay! What can I help with? Do you have any specific questions? IIRC, you posted something about learning about phonology and stuff like phonemes and allophones. Are you trying to figure out what the difference is between those two things? It's okay, everybody struggles with that at first; I did, too. :)


Yes what are the differences between them?
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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby vijayjohn » 2016-07-22, 3:04

Basically, phonemes are what native speakers of some language think of as "different sounds." Allophones are all the sounds they actually correspond to.

Here's an example using Hindi and English (actually, I think since you know Hindi, that might help a lot when it comes to talking about phonology!). You know how Hindi has क, ख, ग, and घ, and each of those is pronounced differently? To a native speaker of Hindi, of course, each of them also sounds different. But a native speaker of English might only be able to tell the difference between two of them.

That's because in English, out of those sounds, we only really contrast two of those sounds. Kale and gale are different words in English, but the only difference between them is the first sound. If I say the word kale, the k at the beginning of that word will actually come out sounding like a ख. But if I put an s in front of it and say scale, it ends up sounding like क instead of ख. That's because even though क and ख contrast in Hindi, they don't in English.

Since Hindi contrasts all four of these sounds, they're represented by four phonemes in Hindi: /k/, /kʰ/, /g/, and /gʱ/ respectively (that's how you'd write them in IPA :)).
Each of those phonemes has one allophone: /k/ has the allophone [k], /kʰ/ has the allophone [kʰ], and so on.

But since English only contrasts two of them, they're represented by only two phonemes in English: /k/ and /g/.
/g/ in English also has only one allophone: [g].
But /k/ in English has two allophones: [k] and [kʰ].

Does that help at all? :para: Sorry, I know it's pretty complicated, and I also didn't get much sleep last night, so I don't know how much sense I'm making. :lol:

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby voron » 2016-07-22, 11:46

Vijay, what do you think about this argument between St.Petersburg and Moscow phonological schools on the phonemic status of the [ɨ] sound in Russian? St.Petersburg says it's a phoneme and Moscow says it's not.

Am I understanding correctly that if [ɨ] is denied the phonemic status, it also implies the claim that the native speakers are unable to distinguish between say [dɨm] and [dim]? You know that there are no real minimal pairs that can confirm it's a phoneme because as long as [ɨ] changes into [i] it also palatalizes the preceding consonant. Despite this, if you read a text to a Russian speaker where all [ɨ]'s are replaces with [i]'s (without affecting the previous consonant, i.e. without palatalization), I'm inclined to think that it'll sound as an obvious foreign accent to most people.

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby vijayjohn » 2016-07-22, 15:08

**DISCLAIMER: Everything below is very linguistics-nerdy, kind of complicated, and full of jargon. Sorry, Meera. :lol: But don't worry at all about understanding what the heck I'm talking about in this post. ;) Also, I suspect this is a case of talking about the exception rather than the rule.**

Hmm, that's a good question. I honestly don't know (I'm no expert on Russian phonology, so there could easily be something I'm missing), but...it might help to bear in mind that the definition (if you can even call it that...) of "phoneme" and "allophone" I provided in my last post is definitely oversimplified. (I did that on purpose hoping that it might help poor Meera not get confused :P). So like you said, [ i ] only ever occurs after a palatal(ized) consonant in Russian, with [ɨ] occurring elsewhere. To me, that suggests that they're allophones of the same phoneme.

I think you could make a case for saying that this is a situation where native speakers are sensitive to allophonic variation (this does happen sometimes; for example, I remember that dEhiN once mentioned Tamil-speakers being able to tell the difference between a dental nasal and an alveolar one even though they're definitely allophones of the same phoneme in Tamil). You could also argue that even when there is no audible, Russian-style palatalization (e.g. /d/ > [d̻ʲzʲ] or whatever before a front vowel), the consonant can still be palatalized. I think it's fair to say that palatalization of some sort is difficult in general to avoid before front vowels, cross-linguistically, since we don't produce sounds in isolation; whenever we speak, we're always subconsciously anticipating some of the sounds that will follow the sound that we're currently producing, so we constantly have coarticulation effects all over the place.

EDIT: I had to put spaces when writing "[ i ]." :lol:

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby mōdgethanc » 2016-07-23, 1:36

vijayjohn wrote:So like you said, [ i ] only ever occurs after a palatal(ized) consonant in Russian, with [ɨ] occurring elsewhere. To me, that suggests that they're allophones of the same phoneme.
But [ i ] often occurs at the beginning of a word, and [ɨ] can too (rarely).
I think you could make a case for saying that this is a situation where native speakers are sensitive to allophonic variation (this does happen sometimes; for example, I remember that dEhiN once mentioned Tamil-speakers being able to tell the difference between a dental nasal and an alveolar one even though they're definitely allophones of the same phoneme in Tamil). You could also argue that even when there is no audible, Russian-style palatalization (e.g. /d/ > [d̻ʲzʲ] or whatever before a front vowel), the consonant can still be palatalized.
This affrication is not universal in Russian, though. I think.
I think it's fair to say that palatalization of some sort is difficult in general to avoid before front vowels, cross-linguistically, since we don't produce sounds in isolation; whenever we speak, we're always subconsciously anticipating some of the sounds that will follow the sound that we're currently producing, so we constantly have coarticulation effects all over the place.
Since back vowels tend to velarize consonants in Russian, perhaps what they're perceiving is the lack of that (even though it's allophonic).

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby vijayjohn » 2016-07-23, 2:12

mōdgethanc wrote:But [ i ] often occurs at the beginning of a word

Are you sure, or is that [ji] then?

EDIT: Wait, how come I have to write [ i ] and voron doesn't?? :shock:

EDIT2:
mōdgethanc wrote:Since back vowels tend to velarize consonants in Russian, perhaps what they're perceiving is the lack of that (even though it's allophonic).

I'm confused; how would that help with distinguishing [dim] from [dɨm]? Neither of those have velarization, right?

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby mōdgethanc » 2016-07-23, 5:56

vijayjohn wrote:Are you sure, or is that [ji] then?
No, it's not. That's impossible in Russian phonotactics. The rule is that either [i] or iotated vowels (like /ja/, /je/, /ju/) trigger palatalization. [i] and [j] are basically the same sound, right? But I think the letter is always just [i], not [ji]*.

Ukrainian can have [ji] and there is a special letter to write it. But Russian doesn't have one.
Wait, how come I have to write [ i ] and voron doesn't?? :shock:
Try the IPA tags.
I'm confused; how would that help with distinguishing [dim] from [dɨm]? Neither of those have velarization, right?
The second one might. I'm not completely sure though.

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby Serafín » 2016-07-23, 6:32

vijayjohn wrote:EDIT: Wait, how come I have to write [ i ] and voron doesn't?? :shock:
He's not using the IPA tags (which also works for that), so I guess he checked the option to disable BBCode for that post.

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby vijayjohn » 2016-07-23, 14:23

Shit, no wonder! I totally forgot there was an option to disable BBCode!
No, it's not. That's impossible in Russian phonotactics. The rule is that either [i] or iotated vowels (like /ja/, /je/, /ju/) trigger palatalization.

So I have a Russian book (as in a book for teaching Russian) that transcribes the pronunciation of unstressed word-initial <е> as [ji]. Maybe [jɪ] would be more accurate, though. And I could've sworn I'd heard word-initial [ji] before in words like июнь and июль! But maybe that's just my brain, the same one that used to think I'd heard uvular R in a reading of the Qur'an. :silly:
[i] and [j] are basically the same sound, right?

Depends on who you ask. :lol: I think I've alternatively seen people say [j] is the non-syllabic form of any unrounded front vowel or something. (I don't really remember lol).
Wait, how come I have to write [ i ] and voron doesn't?? :shock:
Try the IPA tags.

I did, and it didn't work. :P

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby voron » 2016-07-23, 15:21

Serafín wrote:so I guess he checked the option to disable BBCode for that post.

I just type [i] and it works, I don't have to do anything special. Here is some BBCode, too.

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby vijayjohn » 2016-07-23, 15:44

Wait, maybe it was just a temporary thing, because now it seems to work both with and without the IPA tags even when I don't disable BBCode. :?

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Re: TAC Meera 2016

Postby Serafín » 2016-07-23, 15:49

Oh, I see.

It must be because you're not closing it anywhere in the post with [/i]. The rules of the BBCode parse have been changed. It used to be that if you put a single [i] somewhere and didn't close it, the parser would automatically add the closing tag for you at the end of your post.


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