Presentation on theme: "Introduction to Linguistics 2 The Sound System"— Presentation transcript:
1 Introduction to Linguistics 2 The Sound System Prof. Jo Lewkowicz
2 Review of week 1 What is language? In what ways do languages differ from each other?In what ways is human language similar to / different from animal communication?What role does context play in determining meaning?What is the difference between an utterance and a sentence?What do you understand by the following utterance?If you leave your car in this road, it’s likely to get a ticket.
3 Systems of language Language consists of 3 interlocking systems The system of soundsThe system of wordsThe system of grammarThese systems form the resources for creating meaningEach system is language specificEach can be pulled apart and put back together again
4 The sound systemThe sound system of any language can be studied from two points of view:how individual sounds in the language are made (phonetics)The relationship between sounds and meaning (phonology)
6 How do we make speech sounds? Use air from our lungs as well as the organs of speech, i.e. lips, tongue, teeth , vocal cords to create different soundsBy manipulating the sounds in different ways we make different soundsPhonemes are different sounds that indicate a different meaning, e.g. pill/bill, till/dill, mill/nilAllophones are variations in pronunciation of individual sounds that do not signal difference in meaning, e.g. the difference in the way the /l/ is pronounced according to the sounds that surround it, as in plane and pail.Which sounds can be put together in a given language is rule governed, i.e. certain sounds can go together while others cannot. In English /ng/ can appear at the end of a string of sounds as in ‘sing’ but not at the beginning (as opposed to languages such as Thai where /ng/ can appear at the beginning).
7 Processes of speech production Initiationprocess of expelling air from the lungsPhonationprocess of opening or narrowing of the vocal chords as the air stream goes through, producing either voiced sounds (e.g. /b/, /d/) or voiceless sounds (e.g. /p/, /t/)ArticulationThe way in which the tongue and lips impede and manipulate the flow of air.
8 Representing spoken language More sounds in English than letterse.g.12 vowel sounds, only 6 vowel lettersThe relationship between spelling and the way words are pronounced is opaque in English (as compared to Finnish)Would you consider Polish a more or less opaque language?To represent pronunciation the International Phonetic Alphabet has been createdAllows representation of how words are pronouncedcoot /ku:t/– cute /kjut/Allows dialectical variations to be notedcoupon /kupan/ - /kjupan/Allows the notation of languages for which there is no writing system e.g. Kpelle spoken in Liberia
9 Types of sounds 1 Consonants Made by obstructing the air stream in different ways as it leaves the lungs.Consonants are classified according to:Voicing (voiced / voiceless)Manner of articulation (how the sound is made, e.g. by stopping the air in the mouth and then expelling it quickly as in the plosive sounds /p/ & /b/.Plosives (stops) /p/, /b/, /t/, /d/, /k/, /g/, /?/Nasals /m/,/n/, /ŋ/Fricatives /f/, /v/, /θ/, / ð/, /s/, /z/, /∫/, /З/, /h/Affricates /t∫/, /dЗ/Liquids /l/ , /r/Glides /w/ , /j/Place of articulation (where in the mouth the air is stopped or obstructed)Bilabial (2 lips)Labiodental (teeth and lips)Interdental (tongue between the teeth)Alveolar (tongue touching the alveolar ridge)Palatal (tongue raised towards the hard palate)Velar (back of the tongue raised at the velum)Glottal (air is stopped at the glottis)
10 Types of sounds 2 Vowels Diphthongs Air stream is never blocked when producing vowelsThey form the nucleus of the syllable & can stand aloneVowels are classified according to:Tongue height (high, mid, low)The part of the tongue being raised (front, middle, back)Shape of the lips ( spread, neutral, round)Vowel length (short, long)DiphthongsCombination of 2 sounds (vowel + glide)e.g. fly, toy, cloud
12 Sound and meaningThe study of sounds & the relationship between sound and meaning is called phonologyTwo branches of phonologysegmental: involving individual soundssuprasegmental: stress, rhythm & intonation
13 Segmental phonologyLook at the following pairs of sentences: in what way do they differ?He beat the dog - Look at that rock!He bit the dog - Look at that lock!The differences are in a single sound (phoneme)Phonemes are the building blocks of meaningWords that differ in a single phoneme (either vowel or consonant) are known as minimal pairsLanguages do not necessarily share the same phonemes, e.g. In Japanese there is no distinction between /l/ & /r/, hence you might think a Japanese air steward(ess) has said:Have a good fright, instead of : have a good flightMake a list of 5 minimal pairs in English
14 Suprasegmental phonology Stress – emphasis placed on a syllable or a wordThis 'building is 'VERY 'noisyTHIS 'building is 'very 'noisyRhythm – tune of the language, pattern of stressed & unstressed syllablesEnglish is a stress-timed language, therefore the pattern is irregularIntonation – raising and lowering of voice pitch to convey aspects of meaning not different meaning as in tonal languagesThis is the house. (falling tone)This is the house? (rising tone)
15 Communicative functions of intonation Emotionalto express boredom, excitement, surprise etc.Grammaticalto mark grammatical contrast such as positive & negative or question vs. statementInformation structureto mark new or important information, to give prominence to the part of the utterance the speaker wants the listener to take note ofTextualto give larger stretches of discourse a melodic shape: this allows us to discern the type of discourse (e.g. a news-report, football results etc.)Psychologicalto make language more easily understandable/accessible: we learn and remember in chunks rather than individual wordsIndexicalas markers of personal identity and the social & professional groups we belong to(From Crystal, D. (1997). The Cambridge Encyclopaedia of Language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press)
16 Written and spoken forms In written form a difference is often noted by punctuation, whereas when spoken it is the stress pattern which indicates meaningCompare:White House -white houseLet’s hunt, Sam – Let’s hunt SamMy sister, who lives in Bristol, is coming to Warsaw next week –My sister who lives in Bristol is coming to Warsaw next weekStress patterns are easily acquired by children, but seem much more difficult to acquire by adult learnersStress patterns of a language is a major contributor to a foreign accent
17 Accent vs. dialect Accent Dialect Refers to particular ways of pronouncing a language and varies according to geographical origin, educational background and social classDialectRefers to varieties of language that vary phonologically, lexically and even to some extent grammatically