Linguistics in Amsterdam 4-2 (september 2011)Magaly Grández Ávila: Language transparency in Functional Discourse Grammar: The case of Quechua1
4 Accounting for degrees of transparency within levels
4. 2 At the Phonological Level

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4.2.3 No degemination

Degemination is a phenomenon whereby sequences of identical phonemes are articulated as single phonemes. This occurs, for example, in an English word such as horrible, where the coda of the first syllable /hɒr/ functions as the onset of the adjacent syllable /rib/, and so it would be represented at the Phonological Level as follows (Hengeveld and Mackenzie, 2008: 450):


The Output Component (articulator) will reduce the sequence of phonemes /-rr-/ into a single one /-r-/ by means of a process of degemination. In a transparent grammar, degemination is not expected to operate, especially, at morpheme or word boundaries, as it would obscure the one-to-one correspondence between a unit of meaning and a unit of form.

In Quechua, degemination at morpheme boundaries does occur, e.g. ichik ‘little’+ -kuna ‘pl’ = ichikuna ‘little ones’. This is true when an affix such as –kuna is at stake. However, the cliticization of post-positions such as –kama is not subjected to processes of degemination according to Weber (1989:470). Thus, as for what degemination concerns, Quechua can be said to bear certain degree of transparency.