Alignment and locality in the typology of affixing language games
This paper contributes to the discussion around the (extra-)grammatical status of language games (or ludlings). We collected over 60 games which are based on the affixation of a dummy morpheme, which is infixed and iterated in most cases. While some are obviously reduplicative, closer investigation reveals that all the games involving iterativity function like reduplication. Our optimality-theoretic analysis concentrates on the explanation of shape, segmental content, placement and iterativity of the dummy affix and employs only constraints standardly assumed in the literature on reduplication. We show that no ludling-specific constraints or stipulations are necessary to account for this typology and make predictions on limitations that presumably apply to typological variation with regard to language games. Ludlings are thus variations of grammatical constraint rankings.