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Linguistics week 6 Phonetics 4.

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Presentation on theme: "Linguistics week 6 Phonetics 4."— Presentation transcript:

1 Linguistics week 6 Phonetics 4

2 Parameters for describing consonants
So far (this is not complete yet) we have Airstream (usually the same for all consonants) Place of articulation Voicing Manner of articulation So, [p] is … egressive pulmonic bilabial voiceless plosive This was what I was expecting in the quiz!


4 Affricates in Mandarin
/tsʰ/ and /ts/ /tʂʰ/ and /tʂ/ /tɕʰ/ and /tɕ/ Can you guess what they are? What is the ʰ? Why have I suddenly started using /asd/ instead of [asd]? (slant brackets instead of square brackets) ㄘ and ㄗ ㄔ and ㄓ(retroflex affricate) ㄐ and ㄑ(alveolo-palatal affricate)

5 Aspiration Aspirated and unaspirated consonants
ㄅ is unaspirated [p] Voicing for the next sound (a vowel) begins immediately after plosion ㄆ is aspirated [ph] (puff of air) Vocal folds remain open briefly, after the stop is released English: spit vs pit (aspiration difference) Compare pit vs bit That is a voicing difference Aspiration is much less important in English than in Chinese Can you explain why?

6 Because aspiration in Mandarin is phonemic
pʰ and p are two different phones; two different sounds but in Mandarin they are different phonemes /pʰa/ (ㄆㄚ) and /pa/ (ㄅㄚ) represent different meanings in English pʰ and p do not help to distinguish meaning There are no minimal pairs like pʰa and pa Slant brackets are used for phonemic transcriptions // Square brackets are used for phonetic transcriptions [] This is an important point We will return to it later

7 Mandarin sounds

8 This week Sound description, recording and animation. Take a look at and click on “English library”. Read about vowels, pp What are the parameters for describing vowels (like voicing, airstream etc with consonants)?

9 Vowels vs consonants Consonants Vowels
There is some obstruction in the vocal tract (=the mouth or throat) Vowels There is no such obstruction (the air flows freely)

10 Regional accent variation
English accents The consonants are generally the same The vowels are often very different Mandarin Chinese accents Pronunciation of consonants often varies widely according to region

11 Describing vowels Say [i] followed by [æ] (like cat)
Think about where your tongue is Look in a mirror What changes? What can you say about the position of the tongue in the two cases? This is one of the parameters of vowel description

12 Another parameter Now compare [ɑ] (father) with [æ] (like cat)
You can also try comparing the vowels in ㄢ and ㄤ Notice any difference? This is the second distinguishing parameter (factor)

13 The third parameter Fromkin (p254) invites you to compare 四 with 速
Or more straightforwardly, compare ㄧ with ㄩ The difference should be quickly apparent

14 So, the 3 parameters are…

15 The IPA vowel chart This is a stylized representation of the inside of the mouth It shows the cardinal vowels marked by black dots and the approximate position of vowels common in many languages The next slide shows the position of English vowels on the same kind of chart

16 British American

17 Links for vowel sounds General American (GenAm)
British “Received Pronunciation” (RP) Cardinal vowels (those shown on the IPA chart) and diphthongs of RP and GenAm This is one of the best designed web interfaces I have ever seen, by the way!

18 Diphthongs Fromkin describes these as a vowel + a glide (p255) so /bajt/; /bawt/ Most other writers say there are two vowels involved an initial vowel, in “bite” or ㄞ = a a target vowel, in “bite” or ㄞ = I the tongue moves towards I but doesn’t actually reach its target Check the cool website for a demo

19 Tense vs lax vowels: Fromkin
British vowels are short /I/ or long /i:/ Some people write the transcription with the colon (:) American vowels are generally described as either tense or lax See p255 Some of the tense vowels correspond to diphthongs in British pronunciation /lod/  /ləʊd/; /led/  /leId This means that /e/ is available to transcribe American /ɛ/ so, “led” is /lɛd/ in American transcription, but /led/ in British transcription And /led/ would be spelled “laid” to an American linguist A question for you to consider: We talked about 3 parameters for describing vowels. Why don’t we have a 4th parameter “length” or “tenseness” or “laxness”?

20 Quizzes, exams etc etc In week 10, there is an 80 minute midterm exam. You can expect questions on: Anything I talked about in class Anything on these slides Anything from the web resources I referred you to Anything from Fromkin, in the sections related to what we covered in class For some questions, you will write a short answer of a few words, maybe a number, maybe a symbol For other questions, you will write a short paragraph. You will get a half credit for anything you write in Chinese

21 Quizzes, exams etc etc The quiz last time was slightly disappointing
So, next week there will be another quiz All consonants (including approximants/glides and affricates) found in English and Mandarin Vowels of American English, classified according to Figure 6.5 in Fromkin If I ask for a symbol, write only one symbol If I ask for the 3 or 4 parameters which define a sound, write the term for each of the 3 or 4 parameters!

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