The Weekly Newsletter of MIT Linguistics

Phonology Circle 12/07: Maria Giavazzi

Time: Monday 12/7, 5pm, 32-D461
Speaker: Maria Giavazzi
Title: Perceptual effects of stress on consonantal contrasts: Preliminary results

I am going to present results from an acoustic study investigating the effects of primary stress on the acoustic realization of stop bursts in Italian. I will then show preliminary (partial) results from a perceptual experiment suggesting that stressed-conditioned differences on stop bursts affect the confusability between stop and affricates before front vowels. I use these experimental results to provide a Dispersion Theoretic analysis (Flemming 1995, 2001) of Italian palatalization as a case of neutralization of the velar-affricate contrast in non-stress adjacent positions. Finally, I will propose that similar effects of stress on the realization of adjacent consonants could have been the trigger of a further prosodically conditioned consonantal process namely assibilation /t-i/ sequences in Finnish.

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