Volume 3, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2589-1588
  • E-ISSN: 2589-1596
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This paper presents a computational account of nonderived environment blocking (NDEB) that indicates the challenges it has posed for phonological theory do not stem from any inherent complexity of the patterns themselves. Specifically, it makes use of input strictly local (ISL) functions, which are among the most restrictive (i.e., lowest computational complexity) classes of functions in the subregular hierarchy (Heinz 2018) and shows that NDEB is ISL provided the derived and nonderived environments correspond to unique substrings in the input structure. Using three classic examples of NDEB from Finnish, Polish, and Turkish, it is shown that the distinction between derived and nonderived sequences is fully determined by the input structure and can be achieved without serial derivation or intermediate representations. This result reveals that such cases of NDEB are computationally unexceptional and lends support to proposals in rule- and constraint-based theories that make use of its input-oriented nature.


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