LING521 - Spring 2019

1. Lexicon/Phonology/Phonetics

The first section of the course will deal with the problem of "allophonic variation" in segmental phonology and phonetics.

We will undertake a couple of joint exercises in classification and measurement, both to explore concepts and issues, and to learn techniques. A brief overview of the theoretical issues can be found in

Mark Liberman, "Towards Progress in Theories of Language Sound Structure", in Shaping Phonology , 2018

Our first class exercise will look at realizations of the final consonant cluster in the word "don't" in versions of the calibration sentence "Don't ask me to carry an oily rag like that" in the TIMIT corpus, representing one sub-case of the phenomenon misleadingly called "t/d deletion".

We'll also look at allophonic variation in syllable-final /s/ in Spanish.

Some relevant background reading:

Sheila Blumstein and Kenneth N. Stevens, "Acoustic invariance in speech production: Evidence from measurements of the spectral characteristics of stop consonants." The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 66, no. 4 (1979): 1001-1017.

David Pisoni, "Variability of vowel formant frequencies and the quantal theory of speech: A first report." Phonetica 37, no. 5-6 (1980): 285-305

Mark Liberman and Janet Pierrehumbert. "Intonational invariance under changes in pitch range and length". In Language sound structure, ed. by Mark Aronoff and Richard Oerhle,  (1984): 157-233.

Kenneth Stevens,  "On the quantal nature of speech." Journal of phonetics 17, no. 1 (1989): 3-45.

Joseph Perkell,  Melanie Matthies, Harlan Lane, Frank Guenther, Reiner Wilhelms-Tricarico, Jane Wozniak, and Peter Guiod. "Speech motor control: Acoustic goals, saturation effects, auditory feedback and internal models." Speech communication 22, no. 2-3 (1997): 227-250.

Kenneth Stevens and Samuel Jay Keyser. "Quantal theory, enhancement and overlap." Journal of Phonetics 38, no. 1 (2010): 10-19.

Neville Ryant and Mark Liberman, "Large-scale analysis of Spanish /s/-lenition using audiobooks", ICA 2016


2. Portuguese Vowel Lenition


David Silva,. "The variable elision of unstressed vowels in European Portuguese: a case study." 1994.


David Silva. "The variable deletion of unstressed vowels in Faialense Portuguese." Language Variation and Change 1997.

David SIlva. "Vowel lenition in Sao Miguel Portuguese." Hispania 1998.

Paola Escudero, Paul Boersma, Andréia Schurt Rauber, and Ricardo AH Bion. "A cross-dialect acoustic description of vowels: Brazilian and European Portuguese." JASA 2009.


Leda Bisol and João Veloso. "Phonological Processes Affecting Vowels: Neutralization, Harmony, and Nasalization." The Handbook of Portuguese Linguistics (2016): 69-85.


Juliana Simoes Fonte. "The unstressed vocalism in the history of Portuguese." Alfa: Revista de Lingüística 2017.


3. Allophonic Variation

Tense Tents