Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Linguistics
An analysis of a corpus of Spanish loanwords in Paraguayan Guarani shows the stratified structure of the Guarani lexicon evidenced by varying phonological repair strategies in the loans. Ito and Mester (1999 and earlier work) show that a language with a synchronically relevant stratified lexicon displays impossible nativization effects. The phonology and morphology of Guarani provide evidence for the synchronic relevance of the stratification, and as expected the corpus shows specific nativization strategies which are unattested. A nonce-word experiment with native Guarani speakers shows that in some cases, but not all, impossible nativizations are strongly avoided by native speakers. The Ito and Mester (1999) model handles the impossible nativizations within Optimality Theory through their proposed ranking consistency of faithfulness constraints across strata. Variable repair strategies of certain Spanish phonological structures in Guarani in addition to the results of the experiment present a theoretical problem for ranking consistency.