What explains the reductions in /s/-clusters: Sonority or continuant?

This study is a cross-linguistic examination of the patterns of reduction of two-member /s/-clusters. Data from six languages (English, Dutch, Norwegian, Croatian, Hebrew, and Polish) gathered from the productions of typically developing children and from children with phonological disorders are analyzed. While the languages belong to three different families, the results point to a universal tendency. Specifically, in the reductions of "s+stop" and "s+nasal" targets, the preference is the retention of C2, whereas in /sl/ and /sw/ targets, the clear pattern is in favor of the retention of C1. These patterns suggest that the continuancy of C2, not sonority, is the determining factor; C2 prevailed in "/s/+[-continuant]" targets, whereas C1 is retained in "/s/+[+continuant]" targets. PMID: 23617795 [PubMed - in process]
Source: Clinical Linguistics and Phonetics - Category: Speech Therapy Authors: Tags: Clin Linguist Phon Source Type: research

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