Influence of Poor Fit Vowels on Perception of Consonants Public Deposited

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  • March 21, 2019
Creator
  • Muratani, Yuka
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Linguistics
Abstract
  • The present study investigated native English listeners' perception of an ambiguous fricative noise from a [s]-[ʃ] continuum followed/preceded by a poor fit vowel—either one of the [i]s that have higher/lower formant frequencies than a good exemplar of English [i], or [u]s that have higher/lower formant frequencies than a good exemplar of English [u]. The main questions that the present study intended to address were, i) whether listeners would show perceptual contextual dissimilation (a.k.a. compensation for coarticulation, Mann & Repp, 1980, 1981) or listeners would show perceptual contextual assimilation (a.k.a. parsing, Fowler, 1984); and ii) whether listeners would respond to the stimuli according to their phonological analysis of the segments (Kingston et al., 2011) or according to the actual phonetic details of the segments (Whalen, 1989). The results were that the listeners showed perceptual contextual dissimilation for their broad (more abstract) phonological categorization of [i] and [u]. However, when the listeners were sensitive to the phonetic details of the segments, the listeners showed perceptual contextual assimilation. The listeners somehow, however, were not sensitive to the phonetic details of poor fit vowels when the stimuli were identified as [si] and [ʃi]. Although it is hard to come to a solid conclusion from these response patterns, the results at least indicate that listeners may be able to parse vowels using their native language knowledge, and dynamically adjust the acoustic discrepancy by showing perceptual contextual assimilation.
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Rights statement
  • In Copyright
Advisor
  • Smith, Jennifer L.
  • Pertsova, Katya
  • Moreton, Alfred
Degree
  • Master of Arts
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2017
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