The term plasticity is used in the natural sciences to refer to the capability of an organism to change in response to experience or damage (Marcus 2004:203).
I will illustrate this notion comparing it to the case of non plasticity, using data from Spanish.1 For clarity in the exposition, firstly I will focus on just one example, the different effects displayed to integrate a Vocoid V. These effects are produced controlling size stabilizations (compressed: svarabhakti (v), decompressed: Vowel (V), semi-decompressed Glide (G); see (15)), Combinatorial plasticity (Bivalent Predicate P3; see (21), Monovalent Predicate P4; see (19), Non-Predicate A; see (20)), Binding agreement plasticity (Assimilatory see a (31b), Dissimilatory; see v (31a)), Binding domain plasticity (intra-combinatorial (7v), extra-combinatorial (7i,ii,iii)). Secondly, to explain how the svarabhakti sequential construction differs from a non-svarabhakti one, I will suggest that to form the non svarabhakti construction there is a control on the simultaneity of only one element, y, when sequencing in time Xy+yX=XyX (see (24)). In this simple case two combinations are controlled to achieve a particular integration of 4 into a folded integrated sequence of 3. To form a svarabhakti construction there is a control on the simultaneity of two elements, yz, when sequencing in time Xyz+yzX=XyzX (see (26)). Here two stereo combinations are controlled to achieve a particular integration of 6 into a folded integrated sequence of 4. Child language development controls first a non svarabhakti simple folding and later a svarabhakti double folding.
1 Parts of this discussion were presented to different audiences at the
Association of Hispanists in Glasgow, The Ortega y Gasset Institute in Madrid and the Romance Linguistics Graduate Seminar in
Oxford. I am grateful for the comments raised there. I am particularly thankful to Paul O'Neill who has provided me of
spectrographic data and helpful comments. All mistakes are mine. Squared brackets will be used to represent articulated resolutions
given in IPA symbols. Written spelling will be used otherwise.
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Volumen 22 (2005)