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Shaping Phonology$
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Diane Brentari and Jackson L. Lee

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780226562452

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2019

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226562599.001.0001

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The Dynamics of Prominence Profiles: From Local Computation to Global Patterns

The Dynamics of Prominence Profiles: From Local Computation to Global Patterns

(p.253) Twelve The Dynamics of Prominence Profiles: From Local Computation to Global Patterns
Shaping Phonology

Khalil Iskarous

Louis Goldstein

University of Chicago Press

At many levels of linguistic structure, units at one level are organized into a group, forming a unit at a higher level. This is the basis of hierarchical structure that organizes units from the phonetic to the discourse level. In many areas of Linguistics, it has emerged that the rules of combination that organize units hierarchically are local in nature, even though the structures that emerge have a wider more global span. This paper builds on work by John Goldsmith and Gary Larson on computational networks that organize syllables into feet based on local interaction between the neighboring syllables, and that build global metrical structures that are typologically well-attested using dynamical systems analysis. The goal of the paper is to establish exactly what kind of dynamical system the Goldsmith/Larson is, and to introduce, in a tutorial style, the necessary background in dynamical systems analysis, difference equations, and green’s function analysis to make clearer the import of the Goldsmith/Larson networks for metrical structure analysis, as well as for the general motif of hierarchical patterning in language.

Keywords:   metrical structure, dynamical systems, Green's function, local/global relations, difference equations

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