Iosad, Pavel. 2018. Optimality Theory: Motivations and perspectives. In S. J. Hannahs & Anna R. K. Bosch (eds.), The Routledge handbook of phonological theory, 13–36. London, New York: Routledge.

 download pdf

The file is open to annotations via Comments are always welcome!

Categories:  Optimality Theory Phonological theory

 Share on Twitter

This chapter provides an introduction to the basic mechanisms of Optimality Theory in phonology and to the most important motivations cited for its widespread adoption. I also review some of the empirical and conceptual challenges it has faced. Ultimately, I suggest, many of these challenges can be traced back to the fact that while OT grew out of a general dissatisfaction with some aspects of late-1980s rule-based phonology, it was adopted as a general theory of phonological computation without an explicit statement of the division of labour vis-à-vis other components of linguistic knowledge with which it interacts. I conclude the chapter by a discussion of ways in which OT still remains relevant even within a changed phonological landscape.

The chapter is © Routledge

← Welsh svarabhakti as stem allomorphy | Writing | Preaspirasjon i norsk i nye og gamle kjelder →

About me

I’m Pavel Iosad, and I’m a Senior Lecturer in the department of Linguistics and English Language at the University of Edinburgh. ¶ You can always go to the start page to learn more.



Subscribe to the  RSS feed, or follow me on Twitter at  @anghyflawn.