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Weak Lips? A Possible Merger of /i/ and /y:/ in Gothenburgh
Högskolan Väst, Institutionen för individ och samhälle, Avd för utbildningsvetenskap och språk.
Jönköping University, School of Education and Communication, Jönköping, Sweden.
2020 (engelsk)Inngår i: Phonetica, ISSN 0031-8388, E-ISSN 1423-0321, Vol. 77, s. 268-288Artikkel i tidsskrift (Fagfellevurdert) Published
Abstract [en]

BACKGROUND/AIMS: This study investigates a possible merger in the early stages between /i:/ and /y:/ among young speakers in Gothenburg, Sweden.

METHODS: (1) A large-scale online perception experiment testing listeners' abilities to identify the two vowels and (2) acoustic analysis of 705 vowels from 19 speakers.

RESULTS: The perception study shows that listeners classify the horizontally centralized /y:/ as /i:/, both in isolated vowel items and in items containing the full word. This indicates that /y:/ is moving into the perceptual space of /i:/. Listeners also classify the unmerged /y:/ as /i:/ when listening to [y:] in isolation, indicating that lip rounding is a perceptually weak feature, for this centralized vowel, in this variety. The acoustic analysis shows that /i:/ tends to be produced as [ɨ:], and that there is no acoustic difference between /i:/ and /y:/ in measurements correlated with the first two formants, i.e. lip rounding is the most important distinctive feature.

CONCLUSION: Results point in the direction of an incipient vowel merger, following a merger-by-approximation model. These results indicate a lack of perceptual strength of an articulatory feature in the disappearing phoneme, namely lip rounding, and the consequent perceptual similarities between the horizontally centralized [ɨ:] and /y:/.

sted, utgiver, år, opplag, sider
2020. Vol. 77, s. 268-288
Emneord [en]
Linguistics, phonetics
HSV kategori
Forskningsprogram
HUMANIORA, Svenska
Identifikatorer
URN: urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-13840DOI: 10.1159/000499107ISI: 000568251200001PubMedID: 31048576Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85065608487OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hv-13840DiVA, id: diva2:1316440
Tilgjengelig fra: 2019-05-17 Laget: 2019-05-17 Sist oppdatert: 2020-10-14bibliografisk kontrollert

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