Effect of Domain Initial Strengthening on Vowel Height and Backness Contrasts in French: Acoustic and Ultrasound Data Purpose Phonetic variation due to domain initial strengthening was investigated with respect to the acoustic and articulatory distinctiveness of vowels within a subset of the French oral vowel system /i, e, ɛ, a, o, u/, organized along 4 degrees of height for the front vowels and 2 degrees of backness ... Supplement Article
Supplement Article  |   December 01, 2016
Effect of Domain Initial Strengthening on Vowel Height and Backness Contrasts in French: Acoustic and Ultrasound Data
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Laurianne Georgeton
    Laboratoire de Phonétique et de Phonologie, UMR7018, CNRS/Université Sorbonne Nouvelle–Paris 3, 19 rue des Bernardins, 75005 Paris, France
    Laboratoire Parole et Langage, UMR 7309, CNRS/Aix Marseille Université, 13100, Aix-en-Provence, France
  • Tanja Kocjančič Antolík
    Laboratoire de Phonétique et de Phonologie, UMR7018, CNRS/Université Sorbonne Nouvelle–Paris 3, 19 rue des Bernardins, 75005 Paris, France
  • Cécile Fougeron
    Laboratoire de Phonétique et de Phonologie, UMR7018, CNRS/Université Sorbonne Nouvelle–Paris 3, 19 rue des Bernardins, 75005 Paris, France
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication. ×
  • Correspondence to Laurianne Georgeton: laurianne.georgeton@gmail.com
  • Editor: Jody Kreiman
    Editor: Jody Kreiman×
  • Associate Editor: Susanne Fuchs
    Associate Editor: Susanne Fuchs×
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / Speech, Voice & Prosody / Supplement: Select Papers From the 10th International Seminar on Speech Production
Supplement Article   |   December 01, 2016
Effect of Domain Initial Strengthening on Vowel Height and Backness Contrasts in French: Acoustic and Ultrasound Data
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 2016, Vol. 59, S1575-S1586. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-S-15-0044
History: Received January 31, 2015 , Revised September 24, 2015 , Accepted August 17, 2016
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 2016, Vol. 59, S1575-S1586. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-S-15-0044
History: Received January 31, 2015; Revised September 24, 2015; Accepted August 17, 2016

Purpose Phonetic variation due to domain initial strengthening was investigated with respect to the acoustic and articulatory distinctiveness of vowels within a subset of the French oral vowel system /i, e, ɛ, a, o, u/, organized along 4 degrees of height for the front vowels and 2 degrees of backness at the close and midclose height levels.

Method Acoustic and lingual ultrasound data were examined to characterize the production of vowels in intonational phrase initial position, compared with intonational phrase medial position, for 4 speakers.

Results Formant values and estimates of lingual constriction location and degree differed according to the prosodic position independent of vowel duration, with a higher F1 for /a/, a higher F2 for /ɛ/, a backer constriction for /o/ and /a/ but a fronter constriction for /ɛ/, and a narrower constriction for /e, ɛ, u, o/ but a wider constriction for /a/. For most speakers, these variations enlarge the acoustic and/or articulatory distance between members of the pairs /e-ɛ/, /ɛ-a/, /u-o/, /i-u/, and /e-o/ but reduce the distinction within the pair /i-e/.

Conclusions These changes in intonational phrase initial position are vowel dependent and frequently contribute to augmenting the phonetic distinctiveness between vowels contrasting along the height and backness dimensions.

Acknowledgments
This work has been supported by the French Investissements d'avenir–Labex EFL program (ANR-10-LABX-0083). This work has received a Northern Digital Inc. Excellence Award. We thank the speakers who participated in our experiment. We are also grateful to the editors of this special issue, to the anonymous reviewers, and to Rebecca Scarborough for helpful comments in revising this article.
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