My old buddy the archiphoneme

Scott Sadowsky lists at SPANISHTRANSLATOR.ORG
Sun Sep 22 03:12:18 UTC 2002

On 9/21/2002 09:19, Dennis R. Preston wrote the following:

>Definitely not an archiphoneme (though it warms my heart to see the
>word early on Saturday morning).

Oh, it's still quite current wherever European structuralism and a liberal
supply of formaldehyde are to be found, which includes most of Latin
America, as well as a lot of Europe and Japan, where it seems to be all the
rage.  I wouldn't be surprised if in 200 years there is an Aum Coseriu cult
in Tokyo gassing generativist congresses with sarin.

>Not all neutralization is archiphonemic. In this case the merger of /O/
>and /a/ (as in most western US dialects, Eastern New England and a growing
>band across the Midland) does not result in an archiphoneme; it simply
>results in phoneme loss.

Point taken.  That said, it would indeed be nice to find a word for this
type of transcription.

>I have one more phoneme than such speakers (and clearly a great deal of
>moral superiority by possessing it).

Good Lord!  Since when does cruft equate with moral superiority?  Lean and
mean, baby, lean and mean.... Surprised you don't use Outlook with such a
nefarious philosophy.


Scott Sadowsky
Spanish-English / English-Spanish Translator
Research Fellow, Centro de Estudios Cognitivos, Universidad de Chile

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