More Phonetic Transcription Practice by cpd16778

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									More Phonetic Transcription

The Study of Fun!
Levels of Representation
 The most fundamental, and most
  difficult, concept of phonology is this:
 What we think of as a single sound can
  actually be different sounds at two
  different levels:
     an underlying, unconscious, unstated level
     a physical, surface level
For example:
   Say the words “cop” /kap/ and “keep” /kip/
       Notice that the place of articulation is slightly
        different: the /k/ in “keep” is produced slightly
        farther forward than the /k/ in “cop” (it is
   Although they are physically and acoustically
    different, to a native speaker of English, they
    sound the same because in your mind they
    are the same.
       This unconscious level is called the underlying
        level, while the physical reality is called the
        surface level.
Another example:
   Compare the words “pit” /pt/ and
    “spit” /spt/.
     Noticethat you produce a small puff of air
      (aspiration) when you say “pit” but not
      when you say “spit”.
   Again, although a native speaker
    unconsciously thinks that the two /p/
    sounds are the same, physically they
    are quite different.
Distinctive and Nondistinctive
 We say that palatalization and
  aspiration are nondistinctive sounds
  in English – that is, they are not used to
  distinguish words from each other.
 Similarly, the voicing of a bilabial stop
  (the difference between /b/ and /p/) is
  a distinctive sound in English, but not in
Phonemes and Allophones
 For native English speakers, the reason the
  /p/ sounds in “pit” and “spit” are perceived to
  be the same is that they both contain the
  phoneme /p/.
 We refer to [p] and [p] (the nondistinctive
  surface level variations) as allophones of
  the phoneme /p/.
 Note that in other languages (Hindi and Thai,
  for example) aspiration is distinctive: /p/ and
  /p/ are separate phonemes.
  So: in English, [p] and [p] are
  allophones of the phoneme /p/
phoneme (underlying)          allophones (surface)

                       [p] (“regular” /p/)


                       [p] (aspirated /p/)
 And: in English, [k] and [k] are
  allophones of the phoneme /k/
phoneme (underlying)          allophones (surface)

                       [k] (“regular” /k/)


                       [k] (palatalized /k/)
An Analogy
phoneme (underlying)           allophones (surface)

                           when temperature is less than 0

   /H2O/                   [water]
                           when temperature is between 0 and 100

                           when temperature is over 100

Temperature describes the environment in which we see each
  “allomorph” of the “phoneme” H2O.
         The Systematicity of
   Just as with our water analogy, the
    allophones of a phoneme follow
    systematic rules governing when they
     Note  that the /p/ in “pit” is always
      aspirated, while the /p/ in “spit” is never
   How can we describe these rules?
Phonological Environment
 Native speakers unconsciously and
  automatically apply phonological rules
  depending on the environment in
  which a phoneme is used.
 The environment of a sound is basically
  made up of two main factors:
Phonological Environment
1.       The position of a phoneme within a
     •     word initial
     •     word internal
     •     word final
2.       The phoneme’s surrounding sounds
     •     the preceding sound
     •     the following sound
Quick Exercise:
 For each phoneme in the word below,
  describe its environment in terms of
  position in the word and surrounding
“risk” [qsk]
Determining the Relationship
     Between Sounds
   Given two sounds in a language, we
    want to determine: Are they phonemes,
    or allophones of one phoneme?
     If the two sounds are separate phonemes
      (like /p/ and /b/ in English), native
      speakers of that language will recognize
      them as being different.
     If two sounds are allophones of a single
      phoneme (like [k] and [k] in
      English), native speakers will interpret
      them as being the same sound.
Contrastive Sounds
 If native speakers of a language
  recognize two sounds as distinct, they
  are said to be contrastive in that
 The way to prove two sounds are
  contrastive is to find a minimal pair:
  two words with different meanings that
  have exactly the same sounds in the
  same order except for a single
For example, in English:
   Each of the following pairs of words is a
    minimal pair with respect to [k] and [g].

    [k]       cull         [gl]       gull
    [pk] peck               [pg]       peg
    [bk bicker             [bgr] bigger
   When two sounds occur in the exact same
    environments, they are said to be in overlapping
Important Points:
 Minimal pairs prove contrast between
  two sounds; contrastive sounds are
  necessarily different phonemes.
 Minimal pairs are created by putting
  two sounds in the same phonological
  environment (overlapping distribution).
Quick Exercise:
   Which of the following two words
    comprise a minimal pair proving that [s]
    and [t] are contrastive in English?
    [tk] tick         [tsk task
    [ms  mask         [sta  stock
    k]                 k]
    [stk stick        [st] sit
    [sk sick          [mst mast
    ]                  ]
Non-Contrastive Sounds
   When native speakers do not recognize two
    different sounds as distinct, they are said to
    be non-contrastive. Notice that there are
    no minimal pairs with respect to [k] and
     [ki keep             [kap cop
     p]                    ]
     [kp cup              [ke cape
     ]                     p]
     [k kill             [kup coop
     ]                    ]
     [ko coal             ([k kept
     ]                     pt]
Non-Contrastive Sounds
 If we are unable to find two sounds in
  the exact same environment, we can
  conclude that they are in
  complementary distribution.
 That is, where one of the sounds is
  used (its environment), the other never
  occurs, and vice versa.
 We can see, for example, that [k]
  always occurs before front vowels, and
  [k] never does.
Important Points:
 When two sounds are non-contrastive,
  we can’t create a minimal pair; non-
  contrastive sounds are necessarily
  allophones of the same phoneme.
 If two sounds cannot be put in
  overlapping distribution to create a
  minimal pair, they’re in complementary
Back to Systematicity
   Allophonic variation - the surface
    level forms that a phoneme can take -
    is 100% systematic.
     For example, we don’t randomly palatalize
      /k/; a limited number of sounds follow
      [k], and they belong to a single natural
      class, in this case front vowels.
Memory-Jogging Exercise
   Complete each natural class by adding
    the missing phoneme that shares all the
    features of the ones provided.
     /m/,  /n/
     /p/, /t/
     /v/, //, /z/
     /u/, //, /o/, //
     /i/, //, /u/
Friday’s Exam
   Will cover:
       Week 1: Introductory Material
            Linguistic competence vs. performance, true language
             vs. communication systems, descriptive vs. prescriptive
             grammars, arbitrariness, etc.
       Week 2: Phonetics
            Transcription, articulatory phonetics, natural classes
       Week 3: Phonology
            Terminology (allophone vs. phoneme, complementary vs.
             overlapping distribution, distinctive vs. nondistinctive
             sounds, one phonology problem)

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