Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Graduate Group


First Advisor

David Embick


This dissertation provides an account of Zulu reduplication within the derivational framework of Distributed Morphology (DM). New Zulu data challenge the idea of reified domains like the D(erivational)-Stem and Macrostem as relevant constituents for reduplication (Downing 1997, Hyman, Inkelas, and Sibanda 2009). Instead, a crucial distinction is made between morphemes that fall within the scope of reduplication, and those that are outside of it. Reduplication is assumed to be an operation that copies segmental material to a bare disyllabic template, and only has indirect access to morphosyntactic structure through phonological operations. I claim that reduplication can take place as soon as the RED morpheme undergoes Vocabulary Insertion and Linearization, or at a later point in the derivation.

Chapter 1 introduces the material, and chapter 2 presents an argument that the variation between the default Bantu verbal final vowel -a and the vowel from an extension suffix is related to the presence of two v heads in the structure. I show that the variation in the final vowel is absent with lexicalized causatives. Chapter 3 examines the behavior of prefixal material under reduplication, and proposes that the reduplication of prefixal material outside the scope of the RED morpheme is due to a process of local dislocation; this also explains the left-right asymmetry, or why the prefixal long form present marker -ya- is allowed to reduplicate but the suffixal long form perfect marker -il- cannot. Also included in Chapter 3 are data on negation that question the role of accidental syllabification in reduplication. In Chapter 4, I discuss three case studies that illustrate the advantages of the DM-approach. Chapter 5 focuses on the passive construction, though principally on non-reduplication phenomena. Instead, the main topic is the phonotactics of glides and palatals, and how to best account for the non-local palatalization rule that applies in the passive. Chapter 6 looks at tone, the differences between Zululand Zulu and Durban Zulu (Downing 2001), and the implications of reduplicating non-Macrostem prefixal morphemes for domains of tonal spreading. In Chapter 7, I present data from adjectival reduplication, which shows interesting similarities with the process of verbal reduplication.

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