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DepositA sociophonetic account of morphophonemic variation in Palestinian Arabic

This study presents findings from sociolinguistic fieldwork on Palestinian Arabic conducted in the Gaza Strip. The sample includes 15 speakers who are indigenous residents of Gaza City, representing three age groups and both genders. Linear mixed effects analyses are presented on the vowel raising of the Arabic feminine gender marker; a word final vocalic morpheme. The traditional dialect of Gaza City is reported to realize this morpheme consistently as [a] (Bergsträßer 1915), with all other Levantine city dialects raising the feminine ending to [ɛ, e] or [i] except after back consonants (Al-Wer 2007). Results indicate robust sociophonetic variation in the realization of this vowel across age generations. In comparison to the elderly generation in the sample, younger speakers realize this vowel significantly lower and backer in their casual speech. These results reflect what appears to be a change in progress happening across generations in the traditional dialect of Gaza City as a result of dialect contact happening in the Gaza Strip between speakers of difference varieties of Palestinian Arabic.

DepositSense Perception and Reality – A theory of Perceptual Relativity, Quantum Mechanics and the Observer Dependent Universe

This paper investigates the nature of reality. It will do so by looking at the philosophical debate between realism and idealism and at scientific investigations in quantum physics. The concept of perceptual relativity will be examined and this will involve looking at sense perception in other animals and various examples of perceptual relativity in science. It will be concluded that the universe is observer dependent and that there is no reality independent of the observer, which is knowable to the observer. The paper concludes by an investigation of what an observer dependent universe would be like. The paper will describe the nature of reality as we can understand it through our sensory apparatus. It will argue that it is only through our sensory apparatus that we can know the real or external world. It will also argue that there are many and possibly an infinite number of realities each as valid and true as any other. Each reality is not something which is out there in the physical world, if such a world exists, but consists of a relationship between the sensory apparatus and the physical world. The world is observer dependent and changes in the sensory apparatus used to perceive the world will result in changes in the world. This situation exists both in our macro world and in the micro world of quantum entities. Animals with different sensory apparatus receive different sensory perceptions from each other and from those received by human beings. Each animal’s sense perceptions can be regarded as a set and each set of sense perceptions constitute that animal’s world. Every individual’s world within a species will be very similar but not identical; but the worlds of different species may vary greatly. However each species world is as valid as any other species world, so that there is no single objective reality but rather a great variety of subjective realities each as valid as the other.

DepositThe Philosophy of Perception : an explanation of Realism, Idealism and the Nature of Reality

This paper investigates the nature of reality. It will do so by looking at the philosophical debate between realism and idealism and at scientific investigations in quantum physics. The concept of perceptual relativity will be examined and this will involve looking at sense perception in other animals and various examples of perceptual relativity in science. It will be concluded that the universe is observer dependent and that there is no reality independent of the observer, which is knowable to the observer. The paper concludes by an investigation of what an observer dependent universe would be like. The paper will describe the nature of reality as we can understand it through our sensory apparatus. It will argue that it is only through our sensory apparatus that we can know the real or external world. It will also argue that there are many and possibly an infinite number of realities each as valid and true as any other. Each reality is not something which is out there in the physical world, if such a world exists, but consists of a relationship between the sensory apparatus and the physical world. The world is observer dependent and changes in the sensory apparatus used to perceive the world will result in changes in the world. This situation exists both in our macro world and in the micro world of quantum entities. Animals with different sensory apparatus receive different sensory perceptions from each other and from those received by human beings. Each animal’s sense perceptions can be regarded as a set and each set of sense perceptions constitute that animal’s world. Every individual’s world within a species will be very similar but not identical; but the worlds of different species may vary greatly. However each species world is as valid as any other species world, so that there is no single objective reality but rather a great variety of subjective realities each as valid as the other.

DepositPerceptual Politics

Moved by the pervasiveness and insistence of political forces in social life, many scholars have been drawn increasingly to recognize the strands of the aesthetic that are woven into its texture. They have gone beyond dealing with the ways that the arts are used in political propaganda and for arousing patriotic feeling. The aesthetic has come to be recognized as a perceptual domain of considerable power and influence, and some analysts have assigned it a crucial place in political theory. Making the aesthetic central in political theory may be surprising, for two such dissimilar domains of thought and experience might seem, at first, difficult to reconcile. Yet the association of aesthetics with politics has been made, and it will be illuminating to look at some applications that assign the aesthetic dimension a critical place in social and political thought. Let me then trace some of the appeals to the aesthetic in founding political theory, first considering Friedrich Schiller before moving into contemporary proposals.

DepositPerception, Pitch, and Musical Chords

In this dissertation, I argue that hearing a musical chord—a simultaneity of two or more notes perceived as a single object—is perceptually different from hearing separate concurrent tones, and that the object status of chords shapes our experience of listening to harmonic music. Following an outline of the acoustic and contextual cues that promote chordal listening, I offer a series of performance strategies based on these cues that maximize the likeliness of hearing a sonority as a chord. I then argue that these strategies played a role in the development of the Western practice of harmonic tonality, and that the design and use of polyphonic instruments in the late Renaissance period enabled many of these strategies to be applied within musical practice. A further investigation of contextual and experience-based factors in chord perception is conducted in a pair of experiments, in which the listener is asked to recognize or “hear out” a tone from within a three-tone sonority. A listener who perceives a sonority as a chord is better able to perceive its emergent features, which are defined as properties of the whole that are not necessarily properties of its parts. I examine the emergent feature of pitch—a familiar property of the musical tone in both perceptual and theoretical descriptions—using the virtual pitch model proposed by Ernst Terhardt, and I outline the conditions in which a listener might perceive a chord as bearing an emergent pitch. An analysis of the opening sonority of Igor Stravinsky’s Symphony of Psalms gives an example of how chord pitch may be used as a compositional resource. Drawing upon the conclusions of this analysis, I suggest how further research on perceiving chords’ emergent features—in particular the perceptual correlate of the music-theoretical concept of chord quality—could be applied to develop a more complete understanding of how we experience chords.

DepositPerception, Imagination and Leibniz’s Theory of Will

The role of insensible appetitions (similar to insensible perceptions, or petites perceptions) in Leibniz’s theory of appetite and will is sketched. Since such insensible appetitions are the medium of interaction, through the body, between the individual and the physical world, and the form in which, at a microscopic level, environmental sensations originate, it can be concluded that the internal sense, i.e. the imagination, plays to some extent the role of a channel through which such environmental perceptions are collected and organized; here the sentiment of phenomenal reality takes its form, that is then offered both to knowledge and to practice.