From: William J Poser (email@example.com)
Date: Wed Nov 23 2005 - 23:05:14 CST
Here in Carrier country glottal stop is no phantasy. In fact, it is
not hard to construct minimal pairs of sentences differing only
in the presence or absence of a glottal stop. For instance:
ligok 'uyi "A chicken is eating (something)".
ligok uyi "Someone/something is eating a chicken."
In this practical orthography as in many others glottal stop
is represented by the apostrophe. In the first sentence the glottal
stop is the unspecified object marker and fills the object position
of the verb "to eat". ligok "chicken" is therefore interpreted
as the subject. In the second sentence the verb has no object marker
and therefore must have an overt noun phrase as object. The only
NP available is ligok, so the subject must be covert.
Glottal stop is indeed an odd sound in that it doesn't fit neatly
into traditional categories, but I suggest that much of its oddness
is due to the fact that though a stop it behaves in many (but not all)
ways like a sonorant. This latter fact makes sense if sonorants are
defined as those sounds produced in a configuration with low impedance
looking forward from the glottis.
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