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Phonetics of Tongan stress

Garellek, M; White, J; (2015) Phonetics of Tongan stress. Journal of the International Phonetic Association , 45 (01) 13 - 34. 10.1017/S0025100314000206. Green open access

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Abstract

In this study, we determine the acoustic correlates of primary and secondary stress in Tongan. Vowels with primary stress show differences in F0, intensity, duration, F1, and spectral measures compared to unstressed vowels, but a linear discriminant analysis suggests F0 and duration are the best cues for discriminating vowels with primary stress from unstressed vowels. Vowels with secondary stress are mainly marked by differences in F0 relative to unstressed vowels. With regards to the effects of stress on the vowel space, we find that all five Tongan vowels are higher in the vowel space (have lower F1) when unstressed. Moreover, there is no reduction in the overall size of the vowel space. We interpret this pattern as evidence that unstressed vowels in Tongan are not prone to centralization, vowel reduction, or undershoot. The results, however, are consistent with a sonority expansion account (Beckman et al. 1992), whereby stressed vowels are lowered to enhance sonority.

Type: Article
Title: Phonetics of Tongan stress
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1017/S0025100314000206
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0025100314000206
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © International Phonetic Association 2015
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Linguistics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1465037
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