LINGUIS 101 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Vowel Reduction, Dissimilation, Vocal Folds

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29 Sep 2017
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= progressive voiceless change
Pitch
1. Intonation
2. Tone
Continued from Week 3…
Some Narrow transcriptions
Aspiration
[ p^h ] [ t^h ] [ k^h ]
Automatic diphthongs
[ eI ] [ o ]
Glottal stop and flap
[ t ] [ d ] [ ? ] [ r ]
Schwa
[ Ə ]
Phonetics Part 4
Suprasegmentals: pitch
Suprasegmentals
Phonetic info that may be combined w/ segments in a non-sequential way
Pitch: voice on a scale (high to low)
Length: duration of segment
Loudness: volume of segment
Pitch
Speed of vibration of vocal folds
Faster = higher
Slower = lower
Singing- can train yourself to hit a
particular pitch
Everyone can naturally modulate pitch, high or lower
Intonation
Pitch modulation that signals diff grammatical/semantic info
Doesn’t change fundamental meaning of word(s)
Danny became a lawyer.
Danny became a lawyer?
Danny became a lawyer!
Message/meaning is the same, but intonation is diff
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= progressive voiceless change
Tone
In some languages, changing pitch of (single syllable) word can change meaning
of word itself
Single syllable words, only differ in pitch
Used in Indo-Aryan, Pakistan
It is actually very common- most languages in the world are tone languages
2 Types of Tone
Register: pitch stays even and steady throughout syllable
Limited number within a language, up to 5
Usually only 3 (H, M, L)
Contour: either rise, fall or both (change in pitch) over course of syllable
Many more options within a language
Tone languages- Examples:
Mandarin- 3
1 register, 2 contour
Cantonese- 6
3 register, 3 contour
Kam- 9
Length
In some languages, segment length can change word meaning
ie: Hungarian, Japanese, Finnish, Cree, Danish
< ah > vs. < ahhhhh >
2- Short and long
Consonant length = gemination
Can lengthen vowels (more common) and consonants
See Slideshow on Canvas for sound examples
Loudness
No language uses loudness by itself (contrastingly) to change meaning of a word
Can be used as component of indicating stressed vs. unstressed syllables
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= progressive voiceless change
Stress
Perceived prominence of a syllable in a multi-syllable word
Examples in English
PRE - sent vs. pre - SENT
DES -ert vs. de -SERT
Check slideshow on Canvas for other language examples if needed
Phonetic realization of stress
Phonetic correlates of stressed syllable:
Higher pitch, longer duration, louder volume + (more peripheral) vowel quality
Languages may use any combination of these to mark stress
ie: Greek uses only pitch and volume
Phonetics Part 5
Speech production
We all have a tendency to do things in the simplest, most efficient way
2 conflicting pressures on Speech Production
Ease of Articulation: speaker will change sounds to make them more like each
other/articulation simpler
Maximize ease of production
As a result, sounds become more like “neighboring sounds
Ease of Perception: maximize the distinction of sounds/segments
Use to communicate more clearly
Articulatory Processes
Articulation of a segment can change in environment of neighboring sounds
6 basic types
1. Assimilation
2. Dissimilation
3. Deletion
4. Insertion
5. Metathesis
6. Vowel reduction
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