Assimilation and Reduplication in the Structure of Arabic Language
This paper contains an introduction, which defines both assimilation and reduplication, moreover, it highlights the different opinions of the ancient and contemporary scholars who tackled this phenomenon and their limitations, and then, it highlights the aim of this paper. The aim is to prove that both assimilation and reduplication are two conditions that actually do exist in the structure of Arabic language. When they agree in some of their Syntagmatic conditions, each would have a different nature, function and standard of perception.
This paper also contains a preface that explains the relationship between assimilation and reduplication to structure of the Arabic phoneme differentiated mainly by the volume of stress, in addition to highlighting the authenticity of stress and its volume in Arabic language.
In the body of this paper, the researcher presents both assimilation and reduplication according to his understanding accompanied by the opinions of both ancient and modern linguists and their limitations. Then, it tackles the function of both assimilation and reduplication in the structure of speech within the requirements of the semantic and linguistic context.
This paper arrived at the conclusion that the phonetic and phonological cases tackled by ancient Arab linguists under the category of assimilation, are not actually assimilation, but reduplication to the same sound through its point of articulation with two different methods, in two consecutive points in speech chain, with two different functions, within two different but consecutive syllables and in two different values.
It became clear that reduplication is a result of either assimilation, a separate reduplication or according to the origin of its derivational position. In all of these cases, it stipulates that its first syllable must be stressed.
Moreover, it has become clear that assimilation leads to reduplication but it is not reduplication itself. When they both stipulate stress, they differ in its concept, function and the standard of perception.
Assimilation, as it refers to the linguistic process by which a sound becomes similar to anther adjacent sound, occurs at the process of replacing a certain sound with a similar one adjacent to it in the place of articulation. This takes place before articulation itself as a process, but during articulation, reduplication takes place, which means the repetition of a certain sound in its place of articulation in two different methods and in two consecutive positions in the phonological chain.
If we related the sound to its function within the unity of the syllable movement, we would say that: assimilation is the process of overlapping the sound of the most stressed syllable with another sound of a similar place of articulation whether the assimilated sound is present in the first margin of the next syllable in speech or outside speech itself as in dissimilation (Iqlab), while reduplication is the repetition of the sound of the most stressed syllable at the beginning of the margin of the next syllable in speech.
Consequently, assimilation can only be recognized mentally, that is… through analogy and comparison while reduplication can be recognized through speaking and listening.
The function of assimilation does not exceed facilitating the process of speaking while the function of reduplication varies to include enabling language to add more additional meanings, compensating for assimilation, enabling the root to adapt for the conditions of semantic extension through conjugation and derivation.