Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info

New from Oxford University Press!


May I Quote You on That?

By Stephen Spector

A guide to English grammar and usage for the twenty-first century, pairing grammar rules with interesting and humorous quotations from American popular culture.

New from Cambridge University Press!


The Cambridge Handbook of Endangered Languages

Edited By Peter K. Austin and Julia Sallabank

This book "examines the reasons behind the dramatic loss of linguistic diversity, why it matters, and what can be done to document and support endangered languages."

Book Information


Title: An Introduction to Element Theory
Written By: Phillip Backley

A fresh alternative for describing segmental structure in phonology.

This book invites students of linguistics to challenge and reassess their
existing assumptions about the form of phonological representations and the
place of phonology in generative grammar. It does this by offering a
comprehensive introduction to Element Theory.

Traditional features are capable of describing segments and segmental
patterns, but they are often unable to explain why those patterns are the way
they are. By using elements to represent segmental structure, we begin to
understand why languages show such a strong preference for certain kinds of
segments, contrasts, phonological processes and sound changes.

Using examples from a wide range of languages, this book demonstrates the
process of analysing phonological data using elements, and gives readers the
opportunity to compare element-based and feature-based accounts of the
same phonological patterns. Backley also challenges traditional views
through his innovative analysis of English weak vowels and diphthongs and
his unified treatment of linking r and intrusive r as glide formation processes.
Providing a thorough introduction to the main topics in segmental phonology,
this is an excellent overview for both students with a background in standard
phonology as well as for those who are new to the field.

Key Features
-Provides a full and up-to-date description of Element Theory
-Includes examples from many languages and various dialects of English
-Further reading suggested for each topic
-Contains over 100 illustrations, including spectral and spectrographic figures

Publication Year: 2011
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Review: Not available for review. If you would like to review a book on The LINGUIST List, please login to view the AFR list.
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Linguistic Theories
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
Click here to see the original emailed issue.

Format: Paperback
ISBN-13: 9780748637430
Pages: 224
Prices: U.K. £ 24.99

Format: Hardback
ISBN-13: 9780748637423
Pages: 224
Prices: U.K. £ 75