Motivation. The other day1 I received through personal correspondence2 the following note: “BTW, we have a fairly extensive PR from someone to i18nize something.” From my extensive experience with sociolinguistics,3 I instantly understood some of the abbreviations used in this sentence, such as BTW meaning By The Way, or PR meaning Pull Request, something we trust the computational linguists in the audience are intimately familiar with.
But the interesting piece of data here is “i18nize”. The numeronym4 stands for internationalization, with the number 18 as there are 18 letters between the beginning letter i and the ending letter n. This means that i18nize expands to “internationalizationize”. This, being an utterance of a native English speaker, thus attests that the same affix can apply to the same root more than once: in this case, the suffix VBLZ ‘-ize’ appearing twice:
nation- al- iz- ation- ize
nation- ADJZ- VBLZ- NMLZ- VBLZ
This goes counter to traditional rule-
Of course, it has to be the third one, as the first two are not interesting enough to write a squib about. We wish to advance a theory to explain this phenomenon, which we call redundant affixation, or perhaps, reredundant affixationation, in addition to several other, seemingly disparate morphological effects. We introduce the theory of orthographically-
Theory. Our main thesis will be that the Y-model, as we understand it, is incomplete.7 After arriving at the phonetic form (PF), further transformations happen to produce what we call the orthographic form (OF). This can be summarized as in the following diagram:8
What is the mechanism by which OF is produced? We advanced a constraint-
Interested readers are advised to contact the author directly for more information.10 He promises that the full article will be written within the next decade.11
1 In case the registrar hasn’t notified you or anything, I am a listener in the class, so this should not be taken seriously at all. I’m planning to eventually submit this to SpecGram. [Note: Done! —Eds.]
2 Otherwise known as a “private message.”
3 Otherwise known as being an undergrad.
4 Which, regretfully, is a real word.
5 One might think that, if it was a mistake, there would be no other instances of internationalizationize in the literature. But a Google search reveals at least four results for internationalizationize, only one of which is from a Japanese website.
6 Further, a native speaker of English, namely the author, judged internationalizationize as acceptable. We ask any referees to know better than to doubt the data provided by informants.
7 Or perhaps, as you understand it
8 I confess my ignorance of semantics, but in my defense, I don’t know any semanticists to tell me that I’m wrong. For the record, I don’t know any morphologists either, but I’m pretty sure my morphology is right.
9 The author wants to note that wide acceptance is not at all correlated with correctness.
10 Please don’t.
11 He doesn’t.
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|SpecGram Vol CXCII, No 3 Contents|