Linguistics and Literature Studies Vol. 5(3), pp. 213 - 223
DOI: 10.13189/lls.2017.050309
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Assimilation in the Djelfa Dialect of Algerian Arabic: An OT Account

Slimani Khedidja *, Jisheng Zhang
School of Foreign Languages, East China Normal University, China


The Djelfa dialect (DJ) is one of the varieties of Algerian Arabic that is characterized by complicated regressive and progressive assimilatory processes. The current paper addresses some of these assimilatory mechanisms, namely, nasal assimilation, lateral assimilation, /t/ assimilation, devoicing assimilation, emphasis assimilation and guttural place assimilation. The paper offers a straightforward analysis and provides a comprehensive picture of these assimilatory processes within the framework of Optimality Theory (OT), [1] [2], [3] and [4] by means of accounting for the trigger motivating them, which is reflected through the relevant constraints at play and their way of interaction. The paper concludes that regressive assimilation is very pervasive in the dialect as the latter endeavors to abide by IDENT-STEM-ONS (F) and IDENT-ONS (F) as much as possible unless a higher ranked constraint is endangered. Moreover, the paper lends support to McCarthy and Prince's (1995) claim that root faithfulness outranks affix faithfulness as DJ prefers to keep stem segment features intact at the expense of affixes' feature change.

Djelfa Dialect, Regressive and Progressive Assimilation, Constraints, Optimality Theory

Cite This Paper in IEEE or APA Citation Styles
(a). IEEE Format:
[1] Slimani Khedidja , Jisheng Zhang , "Assimilation in the Djelfa Dialect of Algerian Arabic: An OT Account," Linguistics and Literature Studies, Vol. 5, No. 3, pp. 213 - 223, 2017. DOI: 10.13189/lls.2017.050309.

(b). APA Format:
Slimani Khedidja , Jisheng Zhang (2017). Assimilation in the Djelfa Dialect of Algerian Arabic: An OT Account. Linguistics and Literature Studies, 5(3), 213 - 223. DOI: 10.13189/lls.2017.050309.