Published online by Cambridge University Press: 11 June 2008
This paper provides an analysis of the reduplicative systems of Bugotu, Cheke Holo, Tuvaluan and Hoava. In Bugotu and Cheke Holo, intervocalic consonants are not reflected in the reduplicative substring; Tuvaluan reduplication creates initial geminate consonants, while Hoava reduplicants include coda consonants. Blevins (2003, 2005) argues that these languages pose a serious problem for the optimality-theoretic hypothesis of the Emergence of the Unmarked (McCarthy & Prince 1994), which predicts that reduplicated structures should not favour relatively marked outputs. I show that the data in fact are not problematic for the Emergence of the Unmarked hypothesis, because different, conflicting dimensions of markedness can arise in reduplicative phonology. In Bugotu and Cheke Holo, the tolerance of extrasyllabic segments combined with size-penalising constraints helps produce the consonant-deletion pattern. A similar defence of the Emergence of the Unmarked is offered for the reduplicative systems of Tuvaluan and Hoava.