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Section C

Theoretical and Applied Linguistics


LI7: Phonological Theory

This paper is available for the academic year 2023-24.

Li7 Phonological Theory covers the central topics in current and traditional phonological theory, and familiarizes students with the leading theories of phonology. Prerequisite: Li1 or equivalent.


Michaelmas Term

Li7.1    Review of ordering; Lexical Phonology

Li7.2    Non-linear phonology and autosegments

Li7.3    The phonological skeleton

Li7.4    Feature Geometry

Li7.5    Syllables

Li7.6    Syllabification

Li7.7    Prosodic phonology

Li7.8    Vowel and consonant harmony

Lent Term

Li7.9    Underspecification

Li7.10 Stress

Li7.11 Neogrammarians, Structuralism, Government Phonology

Li7.12 Natural Phonology and Optimality Theory

Li7.13 Acquisition (L1, L2, toy grammars)

Li7.14 Aphasia and speech errors

Li7.15 Diachrony

Li7.16 Loanword phonology

Preparatory reading: 
  • Berent, Iris. 2013. The phonological mind. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Clark, John Ellery, Colin Yallop, and Janet Fletcher. 2007. An introduction to phonetics and phonology, third edition. Oxford: Blackwell.
  • Kenstowicz, Michael, and Charles Kisseberth. 1986. Generative phonology: Description and theory. Emerald Group Publishing.
Teaching and learning: 

16 one-hour lectures, 8 one-hour practical sessions, 8 one-hour supervisions.

The paper's Moodle site can be found here.


Assessment will be a take home coursework assessment:

Three essays to be submitted online during the exam period (each essay should be no more than 1500 words). Each answer contributes a third of the total mark.

Course Contacts: 
Bert Vaux