The Syllable Structure And Syllable Based Morphophonemic Processes In Dorze: Representations Based On Moraic Phonology

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The objective of this study was to describe and di scuss the sy llable structure and sy llable based morphophonemic processes in Dorze. The language under study, Dorze, is an Omotic language spoken in the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples Region. The methodology used is an informant method where data were recorded and elicited from informants. It has been identified that Dorze has 26 consonant and 5 vowel phonemes. Vowels IiI and I~I are variants of I ii and leI respectively. As discu ssed in chapter two, there are also cases of consonant gemination and vowel lengthening in which both are contrastive. Regarding the syllable types, there are 8 kinds of sy llable shapes identified for Dorze: V, ev, eve, evve, evee, evvee, ve and evv. Furthermore, both heavy and light syllable shapes are also found. The theoretical framework employed to analyze the syllable structure was the Moraic account of Autosegmental phonology. The Moraic theory claims that the only intervening element between the syllable node and the segmental root node is the mora. The cuncept of heavy and light syllable is also another assumption that is used to best explain segmental length distinctions. It also claims that there is a case of compensatory lengthening involving deletion of a segment and lengthening of another so as to compensate for the deleted segment. Syllable and sy llable related Issues were also treated. More specifically, basic constituents of the syllable, types of the syllable, phonotactic constraints and syllabificat ion processes in light of the Moraic theory were discussed. Following Clements and Keyser (1983), Dorze is identified as type IV language where a vowel alone can const itute a sy llable. Furthermore, the phonotactics of Dorze was also discussed where onset is an optional element and is filled by only one segment while a maximum of two consonants are allowed at syllable final position.



sy llable structure