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Prosodic TypologyThe Phonology of Intonation and Phrasing$
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Sun-Ah Jun

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780199249633

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199249633.001.0001

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Intonational Phonology of Chickasaw

Intonational Phonology of Chickasaw

(p.301) 11 Intonational Phonology of Chickasaw*
Prosodic Typology

Matthew K. Gordon

Oxford University Press

This chapter describes and analyses the intonational phonology of Chickasaw, an endangered Muskogean language spoken in Oklahoma. Topics covered include prosodic constituency, degree of disjuncture between adjacent words, boundary tones associated with various utterance types, and nuclear pitch accent placement. Some of the principal findings are as follows. Chickasaw utterances may be broken down into successively smaller constituents, defined in terms of tonal, durational, and accentual properties. Statements end in a rise in fundamental frequency, phonologically a H% boundary tone; whereas both yes/no and wh-questions end in a fall in fundamental frequency, reflecting a L% boundary tones. Each Intonational Phrase has a nuclear pitch accent that falls on the last syllable in statements, but typically falls on a syllable to the left of the final one in questions. In addition, phonologically predictable nuclear pitch accents are suppressed when adjacent to the morpholexical pitch accent found in certain words.

Keywords:   Chickasaw, intonation, Accentual Phrase, Intonational Phrase, phonetics, phonology, morpholexical pitch accent

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