Chapter 3 Notes.docx

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Narayan, Chandan

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Chapter 3: Phonetics Describing Sounds Phonetics: the study of sounds  We know a great deal about the complex sounds and the sound system of English; it is not something we think about but comes effortlessly  Spelling is a cultural artefact, and is not necessarily language!  There is not a one-to-one correspondence between sound and spelling, so linguists use a system for describing sounds of language in which each sound is represented by a single symbol (IPA- International Phonetic Alphabet) o Example: cough, enough, though, and though all end in ough, but have different sounds o Example: “ee” sound in plea, tee, deceive, tangy, key, ski, brie, people, algae o Example: some are silent like in know, dumb o Single sounds can be presented by two letters thin, that or one letter representing more than one sound unite, untie, xylophone The Solution- IPA:  Linguists use a one-to-one sound to symbol convention that accurately tells them how to document any speech sound  Languages would have Arabic would have trouble writing the sound in words  IPA: Is the Solution  It is a systematic approach to documenting speech sounds using articulatory specifications  Natural class is a set of sounds that have certain phonetic features in common  The one’s in grey are voiced, white are voiceless Phonemes:  Are distinctive sounds in a language that makes a difference in the meaning of a word o For example, sometimes p’s sound like b’s, yet we consider them all p’s  Different languages have different phonemes for example English has forty while !Xu (Southern Africa has 141! The most common are : /p, t ,k/  Phonemes are determined using the minimal pair test o Two words form a minimal pair when they differ by exactly one sound (not letter)  E.g. bat-pat, bought-bat, bat-bad  Suppose you land on an alien planet and your task is to figure out what sounds are used in alien language. You could do this using the minimal pair test, to determine the phonemes  Two types of Phonemes: Vowels and Consonants Consonants:  Are sounds characterized by closure or obstruction of the vocal tract  There are only 24 different consonant phonemes in English  Consonants are described using 3 dimensions o Voicing: Voice of Voiceless o Place of Articulation: o Manner of Articulation Place of Articulation:  Refers to the place, in the vocal tract, where there is an occlusion, impeding air flow, which when released makes sound  POA: o Bilabial: “two lips,” The sounds in this group are all made by bringing both lips together or almost together o Labiodental: “lip, tooth” sounds are made with the lower lip against the upper front teeth o Interdental: “between, teeth” sounds are made with the tip of the tongue between the front teeth. o Alveolar: the sounds in this group are made with the tongue tip at or near the alveolar ridge. o Palatal: the sounds in this group are made with the tongue near your palate (hard part past the alveolar) o Velar: the sounds in this group are made with the tongue near the velum (the soft part of the roof of your mouth (behind palate o Glottal: this is a sound made at the glottis, the space between the vocal folds Manner of Articulation:  Manner is the most unclear of the articulatory dimensions. It is related to how the consonant is articulated o Stop (PlosiveTight spot in your mouth, so air can’t escape. Release the contraction causing an explosion o Fricatives: the sounds in this group are made by forming a nearly complete stoppage of airstream where the sounds quickly moves past the area of articulation o Affricates: sounds in this group are made by briefly stopping the airstream completely and then releasing the articulators slightly so that friction is produced (start as a stop and finish as fricatives) o Nasals: the sounds in this group are made by lowering the velum and letting the airstream pass primarily through the nasal cavity o Glides: the sounds in this group are made with only a slight closure of the articulators tongue closer to roof of mouth- (any more open would be a vowel) o Liquids: The sounds in this group result when a obstruction is formed by the articulators but is not narrow enough to stop the airflow or to cause friction  /l/ a lateral liquid tongue touches the roof of the mouth (near the alveolar ridge, and air flows around the sides of the tongue  /r/ is described as a bunched liquid because for most American English speakers the tongue is bunched up under the palate o Other Names: Approximant (dynamic tongue movements starts in one place ends in another). Trill (rapid movement of the articulator). Tap, Flap (short ballistic movement goes up and hits the top and comes back down). Lateral refers to the air escaping the sides of your mouth. Voicing:  Voicing is the vibration of the vocal folds  All consonants are either voiced or voiceless  The airflow coming out of the lungs can meet resistance at the larynx or voice box. The resistance can be controlled by the different position and tension in the vocal cord/folds which are two muscular bands of tissue that stretch fro from the front to back of the larynx, behind the Adam’s Apple  When relaxed and breathing their open, when there just enough tension/air in the muscles in the cords they vibrate when you speak /s/ vs ./z/ Vowels:  Vowels are produced with no occlusion in the vocal tract  Vowels have a continuous production  Classified using dimensions related to the position of the tongue o Height o “Backness” o Tenseness o Rounding (of lips)
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