Tone 3 in Pekinese This article treats the problem of tone sandhi in Pekinese phonology in terms of a perception experiment. The various shapes of tone 3 in different environments are illustrated by the use of spectrograms. The issue is whether the tone sequence 3–3 is homophonous with the sequence 2–3. There were 130 ... Research Article
Research Article  |   September 01, 1967
Tone 3 in Pekinese
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • William S-Y. Wang
    University of California, Berkeley, California
  • Kung-Pu Li
    Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Research Articles
Research Article   |   September 01, 1967
Tone 3 in Pekinese
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, September 1967, Vol. 10, 629-636. doi:10.1044/jshr.1003.629
History: Received January 1, 1967
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, September 1967, Vol. 10, 629-636. doi:10.1044/jshr.1003.629
History: Received January 1, 1967

This article treats the problem of tone sandhi in Pekinese phonology in terms of a perception experiment. The various shapes of tone 3 in different environments are illustrated by the use of spectrograms. The issue is whether the tone sequence 3–3 is homophonous with the sequence 2–3. There were 130 pairs of test items. The two members of each pair share the same phonological features except that of pitch contour. In other words, one member carries the tone sequence 2–3 while the other carries 3–3. Each test item was given twice, thus yielding a total of 520 items arranged in random order on a reading list from which tape recordings were made. Upon hearing an item on the tape, a subject is required to identify from each pair of 2–3 and 3–3 test items the member he hears. Should there be a phonemic distinction between the two types of tone sequences, a native speaker should have no difficulty in perceiving them as distinct. Then, it would be expected that the subjects could identify correctly in most cases, and that their responses should be reinforced by other phonetic properties and unbiased by semantic plausibility. However, the results of this experiment led to the opposite conclusion.

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