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No Stress Typology

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Abstract

Our contribution introduces a new typological database on word stress that isbeing constructed from two separate databases. We offer a sneak preview of thedistribution of languages by stress type in these two databases, and concludethat we should not expect to gain any drastic new insights from the new databasewith respect to this distribution. Secondly, broadening our views beyondIndonesian – a language without word stress – we investigated descriptionsof all Austronesian languages for which the phonological status of word stressseems doubtful, to see whether there are more of these “stressless” languages.We conclude that there may be quite a few such languages, and hypothesize thatthe use of phrasal accent rather than word stress is a fairly widespread linguisticfeature in the Malayo-Polynesian area.

References

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