Derivational affixes as roots across categories


  • Marko Simonovic University of Graz


Distributed Morphology, Roots, phasal spell out, Optimality Theory, categories, affixes


Several recent accounts (Lowenstamm 2014; Nevins 2015; Creemers, Don, and Fenger 2017) couched in the framework of Distributed Morphology (Halle and Marantz 1993, 1994) argue for extending the separation between roots and categorial heads to derivational affixes. Such approaches offer a straightforward account of affixes that surface under different categorial embeddings (e.g., -ant, both in the noun defendant and in the adjective defiant) by viewing these affixes as roots. In this article, the affixes-as-roots approach is applied to Slovenian affixes. An account is proposed of the variable prosodic behavior of Slovenian derivational affixes, which behave as either stress-attracting or stress-neutral. It is shown that Slovenian derivational affixes have no lexical stress and all their prosodic effects follow from the structures in which they occur. Specifically, stress-attracting behavior is a result of the fact that sequences of roots with no intermediate functional structure (the so-called radical cores) are spelled out to phonology without any prosodic specification. Phonology then assigns the default final prosody to such sequences, creating the illusion of accented derivational affixes. The proposed account is applied to two affixes, -av and -ov, which occur across categorial embeddings (nominal, verbal, adjectival).



How to Cite

Simonovic, M. “Derivational Affixes As Roots across Categories”. Journal of Slavic Linguistics, vol. 30, no. 2, Sept. 2023, pp. 195-33,