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Bantu Spirantization: Morphologization, Lexicalization and Historical Classification

Koen Bostoen UGent (2008) Diachronica - International Journal for Historical Linguistics. 25(3). p.299-356
abstract
This paper examines the irregular application of the sound change commonly known as 'Bantu Spirantization (BS)' — a particular type of assibilation — in front of certain common Bantu morphemes. This irregularity can to a large extent be explained as the result of the progressive morphologization (through 'dephonologization') and lexicalization to which the sound shift was exposed across Bantu. The interaction with another common Bantu sound change, i.e. the 7-to-5-vowel merger, created the conditions necessary for the morphologization of BS, while analogy played an important role in its blocking and retraction from certain morphological domains. Differing morpho-prosodic constraints are at the origin of the varying heteromorphemic conditioning of BS. These uneven morphologization patterns, especially before the agentive suffix -i, were entrenched in the lexicon thanks to the lexicalization of agent nouns. The typology of Agent Noun Spirantization (ANS) developed in this paper not only contributes to a better understanding of the historical processes underlying the varying patterns of BS morphologization and lexicalization, but also to internal Bantu classification. The different ANS types are geographically distributed in such a way that they allow to distinguish major Bantu subgroups. From a methodological point of view, this article thus shows how differential morphologization and lexicalization patterns can be used as tools for historical classification.
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
year
type
journalArticle (review)
publication status
published
subject
keyword
assibilation, agent nouns, spirantization, Bantu, dephonologization, morphologization, historical classification, lexicalization
journal title
Diachronica - International Journal for Historical Linguistics
Diachronica
volume
25
issue
3
pages
299 - 356
Web of Science type
Review
Web of Science id
000262585200001
ISSN
0176-4225
DOI
10.1075/dia.25.3.02bos
language
English
UGent publication?
no
classification
A1
copyright statement
I have transferred the copyright for this publication to the publisher
id
1092290
handle
http://hdl.handle.net/1854/LU-1092290
date created
2010-12-23 13:54:33
date last changed
2016-12-19 15:46:17
@article{1092290,
  abstract     = {This paper examines the irregular application of the sound change commonly known as 'Bantu Spirantization (BS)' --- a particular type of assibilation --- in front of certain common Bantu morphemes. This irregularity can to a large extent be explained as the result of the progressive morphologization (through 'dephonologization') and lexicalization to which the sound shift was exposed across Bantu. The interaction with another common Bantu sound change, i.e. the 7-to-5-vowel merger, created the conditions necessary for the morphologization of BS, while analogy played an important role in its blocking and retraction from certain morphological domains. Differing morpho-prosodic constraints are at the origin of the varying heteromorphemic conditioning of BS. These uneven morphologization patterns, especially before the agentive suffix -i, were entrenched in the lexicon thanks to the lexicalization of agent nouns. The typology of Agent Noun Spirantization (ANS) developed in this paper not only contributes to a better understanding of the historical processes underlying the varying patterns of BS morphologization and lexicalization, but also to internal Bantu classification. The different ANS types are geographically distributed in such a way that they allow to distinguish major Bantu subgroups. From a methodological point of view, this article thus shows how differential morphologization and lexicalization patterns can be used as tools for historical classification.},
  author       = {Bostoen, Koen},
  issn         = {0176-4225},
  journal      = {Diachronica - International Journal for Historical Linguistics},
  keyword      = {assibilation,agent nouns,spirantization,Bantu,dephonologization,morphologization,historical classification,lexicalization},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {3},
  pages        = {299--356},
  title        = {Bantu Spirantization: Morphologization, Lexicalization and Historical Classification},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1075/dia.25.3.02bos},
  volume       = {25},
  year         = {2008},
}

Chicago
Bostoen, Koen. 2008. “Bantu Spirantization: Morphologization, Lexicalization and Historical Classification.” Diachronica - International Journal for Historical Linguistics 25 (3): 299–356.
APA
Bostoen, K. (2008). Bantu Spirantization: Morphologization, Lexicalization and Historical Classification. Diachronica - International Journal for Historical Linguistics, 25(3), 299–356.
Vancouver
1.
Bostoen K. Bantu Spirantization: Morphologization, Lexicalization and Historical Classification. Diachronica - International Journal for Historical Linguistics. 2008;25(3):299–356.
MLA
Bostoen, Koen. “Bantu Spirantization: Morphologization, Lexicalization and Historical Classification.” Diachronica - International Journal for Historical Linguistics 25.3 (2008): 299–356. Print.