Phonology -- The Sound Patterns of Language Made Easy

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1. Phonology: The Sound Patterns of Language <br />By Richard Binkney, Ph.D.<br />1<br /> 2. Phonology is the study of speech sounds<br />Phoneme…
  • 1. Phonology: The Sound Patterns of Language <br />By Richard Binkney, Ph.D.<br />1<br />
  • 2. Phonology is the study of speech sounds<br />Phoneme – the basic unit<br /> of sound<br />Semantics – the study of the<br /> meaning of language<br />Morpheme – smallest unit<br /> of sound to carry <br /> meaning<br />2<br />
  • 3. Phrenological map of the human brain<br />3<br />Notice that the area for Language (35) is one of the smallest.<br />
  • 4. Speech sounds can be classified as either consonants or vowels <br />Consonants – the air <br /> does not flow freely<br />Vowels – air flows <br /> freely to create <br /> different sounds<br />4<br />
  • 5. Put your fingers in front of your throat:<br />Say the letters “V” & “F”<br />What is the difference?<br />Now, try these letter<br /> combinations:<br /> B/P D/T G/K<br /> Z/S Discuss findings.<br />5<br />
  • 6. The Pronunciation of Morphemes<br />Pronounce the plural forms of:<br />Child – Ox – Mouse – Criterion – Sheep<br />The old spelling rule to add s or es is misleading. These are special plurals that have to be memorized early in the use of English.<br />6<br />
  • 7. The old English rule of adding s or esto make a plural word is often misleading. There is no rule to predict how all plural words are formed in English. <br />Allomorph is the technical term describing the plural variance. The words may vary in shape or pronunciation, but not meaning. For example, s has 3 allomorphs: the -s sound in hats<br /> the -z sound in dogs<br /> the &lt;&lt;z sound in boxes<br />7<br />
  • 8. Phonemes are not physical sounds. They are abstract mental representations of the phonological units of a language.<br />The process of substituting one sound<br />for another word to see if it makes<br />a difference is a good way to identify<br />the phonemes of a language. These<br />words differ only in their vowel:<br />beat [bit] [i] boot [but] [u]<br />bait [bet] [e] boat [bot] [o]<br />bite [bajt] [aj] bot [bat] [a]<br />Can you think of any others?<br />8<br />
  • 9. Minimal Pairs…<br />are two words with different meanings that are identical except for one sound segment that occurs in the same place in each word. Say the following word pairs and determine in which sound segment the difference occurs: <br />cab/cap rot/lot had/bad pin/bin zeal/seal<br />9<br />
  • 10. The following Minimal Pairs show<br />that English /p/ and /b/ contrast<br />in initial, medial , & final positions.<br />Initial Medial Final<br />pit/bit rapid/rabid cap/cab<br />Find similar sets of minimal pairs for<br />the following consonant pairs:<br />/k/ - /g/ /l/ - /r/ /s/ - /z/<br />10<br />
  • 11. Morphophonemic Rules<br />determine the phonetic form<br />of the plural morpheme and<br />other morphemes. Like plurals,<br />some irregular past tenses <br />conform to no particular rule <br />and must be learned <br />individually.<br />For example: go / went sing / sang<br /> hit / hit run / ran<br />11<br />
  • 12. A Phoneme the basic form of a sound<br />Each phoneme has associated with it one or more<br />sounds, called Allophones, which represent the actual sound corresponding to the phoneme.<br />For example, notice the <br />differences as you pronounce:<br />Aspiration allophone [p] in pit<br />Without aspiration allophone <br />[p] in spit<br />12<br />
  • 13. Punctuation Marks : phonemes use / / marks – allophones/phones use [ ] marks<br />Phonemically the words <br />bead and bean are transcribed <br />as /bid/ and /bin/<br />Phonetically the words are<br />transcribed to be pronounced<br />as [bid] and [bin]<br />13<br />
  • 14. Complimentary Distribution<br />Is the relationship between two phonemetically similar segments. The sound is modified by the environment. Which variant occurs is determined by the immediate preceeding letter.<br /> For example: the letter l has a complimentary distribution in the words glue and blue . What other<br />variants do you find in these words?<br />sat vat<br /> mill will<br /> rack rock<br />14<br />
  • 15. - Distinctive Features of Phonemes –<br />Phonetics provides the means to describe the phones (sounds) of language, showing how they are produced and how they vary.<br />Phonology tells us how various sounds form patterns to create phonemes and their allophones.<br />15<br />
  • 16. Phoneme Feature Values<br />Voicing and/or Voicelessnessis the presence of a single feature. This single feature may have two values: + = voicing or -- = voicelessness.<br /> Nasality presence or absence is<br /> designated as + or -- also.<br /> Determine the values of:<br />feel / veal cap / cab<br /> m / b <br />16<br />
  • 17. Voicing<br />When verbs add -edto become <br />past tense this ending becomes <br />voiced if the preceding sound is<br />voiced as in “planned” or <br />voiceless if the preceding sound <br />is voiceless as in “jumped.”<br />Since /t/ is not voiced and vowels <br />are voiced, a /t/ between vowels<br />often becomes voiced so that <br />“latter” and “writer” are <br />pronounced like “ladder” and “rider.”<br />17<br />
  • 18. Aspiration<br />/p/ /t/ and /k/ form the natural class of<br />voiceless stops. In English, voiceless <br />stops are aspirated if they are followed <br />by a stressed vowel and not preceded <br />by /s/.<br />This makes sense because aspiration<br />is a puff of air. This puff would occur <br />after a stop. It would occur into a <br />stressed syllable. If the consonant <br />were voiced or if some of the air had <br />leaked out because of a preceding<br />/s/, the aspiration would be less <br />pronounced.<br />18<br />
  • 19. Palatization<br />When a word that ends with a /t/ is followed by a<br />–ual, -ial, or -ion ending, the palatal vowel &lt;y-&gt; changes <br /> the /t/ sound into a /č/ sound. Examples include:<br /> addict addiction<br /> act actual or action<br /> part partial<br /> predict prediction<br />19<br />
  • 20. 20<br />Places of articulation (passive & active):1. Exo-labial, 2. Endo-labial, 3. Dental, 4. Alveolar, 5. Post-alveolar, 6. Pre-palatal, 7. Palatal, 8. Velar, 9. Uvular, 10. Pharyngeal, 11. Glottal, 12. Epiglottal, 13. Radical, 14. Postero-dorsal, 15. Antero-dorsal, 16. Laminal, 17. Apical, 18. Sub-apical<br />
  • 21. Active Articulators<br />Bilabial is one of the 5 active<br />articulators.<br />Put your lips together and say<br />the letters –<br />B P M<br />21<br />
  • 22. Active Articulates<br />Labiodentalis another<br />example of an active<br />articulate.<br />Put your lip to your teeth:<br />Now say - F V<br />22<br />
  • 23. Active Articulates <br />The third example of an active articulate is<br /> Interdental<br /> Place your tongue on the<br /> back of your incisors<br /> Say the letter N<br />23<br />
  • 24. Nasality is a nondistinctive feature for English vowels. There is no way to predict that the difference between the words meat and beat. You simply learn the words.<br />On the other hand, the nasality feature value of the vowels in bean, mean, comb, and sing is predictable because they occur before nasal consonants. When a feature value is predictable by rule for a sound, the feature is nondistinctive or redundant or predictable (the three terms are equivalent). Thus, nasality is a redundant feature in English vowels, but a nonredundant feature for English consonants.<br />24<br />
  • 25. Feature Values : Nasality<br />Nasality occurs with a lowering of the soft palate or velum so that air escapes both through the nose and the mouth. <br />The presence or absence of nasality is designated as<br />[ +nasal ] or [ -nasal ]<br /> Determine nasality for:<br />/m/ /p/<br /> mother patrol<br /> parrot milk Can you think of any others? <br />25<br />
  • 26. Aspiration of voiceless stops illustrates the asymmetry of the phonological systems of different languages.<br />Both aspirated and unaspirated voiceless stops occur in English and Thai, but they function differently. Aspiration in English is not a distinctive feature because its presence or absence is predictable. In Thai, it is not predictable.<br />26<br />
  • 27. What is the difference between distinctive and phonemic?<br />* The phonetic representation of<br />utterances shows what speakers know about the pronunciation of sounds.<br />*The phonemic representation of utterances shows what speakers know about the patterning of sounds.<br />*The words pot/pat spot/spat have<br /> identical phonemes (e.g., /p/ )<br />27<br />
  • 28. In English, vowel length and consonant length are nonphonemic. <br /> Prolonging a sound in<br />English will not produce<br />a different word. In other<br />languages, long and short<br />vowels that are identical <br />except for length are <br />phonemic.<br />In such languages, length <br />is a nonpredictable distinctive feature. <br />28<br />
  • 29. Natural classes of sounds are those groups of sounds described by a small number of distinctive features.<br />One example is where the [-- voiced], [--continuant], which describes /p/, t/, /k/.<br />Any individual member of a natural class would <br /> require more features in its <br /> description than the class<br /> itself, so /p/ is not only<br />[ -- voiced ], [--continuant]<br /> but also [ + labial].<br />29<br />
  • 30. The Rules of Phonology<br /> The relationship between the phonemic representations of<br /> words and the phonetic<br /> representations that reflect<br /> the pronunciation of these words is rule-governed. <br /> Although the specific rules of phonology differ from language to language, the kinds of rules, what they do, and the natural classes they refer to are the same throughout the world.<br />30<br />
  • 31. Assimilation Rulesrules make two or more neighboring segments more similar by making the segments share some feature.<br /> The vowel nasalization rule in English is an assimilation rule, because it involves taking the [+nasal] feature on the segment following the vowel and adding it to the vowel, making the value of [nasal] identical for the two segments. Say the following words and discuss your findings:<br />bone/bow bean/bee line/lie hand/hat<br />31<br />
  • 32. Dissimulation Rules<br />Dissimulation rules make sounds less<br />Similar. Sometimes it is easier to articulate dissimilar sounds:<br />Say the “tongue twister:”<br />The sixth sheik’s sixth sheep is sick.<br />Now say,<br />The fifth sheik’s fourth sheep is sick.<br />Which is easier for you to say? Why?<br />32<br />
  • 33. Epenthesis<br />Epenthesis is the addition of one<br />or more sounds to a word.<br />Excrescense occurs if the sound<br />added is a consonant.<br />Anaptyxis occurs if the sound <br />added is a vowel.<br />33<br />
  • 34. Excrescense<br />An example of <br />Excrescense– addition of an<br />extra vowel to a word <br />Hamp – ster Hamster<br />Can you think of other<br />examples of Excrescense?<br />34<br />
  • 35. Anaptyxis<br />An example of <br />Anaptysix – addition of<br />An extra vowel to a word<br />Pic – a – nicbasket<br />Can you think of other examples?<br />35<br />
  • 36. Epenthesis can also occur as a Poetic Device where the meter of a piece of literature requires extra syllables. <br />For example: In “The Umbrella Man” movie/song the word adds a 4th syllable: um – buh – rel – a<br />Can you think of others?<br />36<br />
  • 37. Metathesis Rules<br />Phonological rules may <br />also reorder sequences <br />of phonemes, as in<br />ask/aks nuclear/nucular<br />animal/aminal<br />spaghetti/pusketti<br />Can you add any others to<br />This list?<br />Dog lovers have metathesized the Shetland Sheepdog into a sheltie.<br />37<br />
  • 38. The more we look at languages, the more we realize that what appears at first to be irregular and unpredictable phonetic forms are actually rule-governed.<br />We learn, or construct, these rules when we are acquiring the language as children. The rules form an important part of the sound pattern that we acquire from birth.<br />38<br />
  • 39. PhonologicalRules<br />The function of the<br />phonological rules<br />in a grammar is to<br />provide the phonetic information necessary for the pronunciation of utterances. <br /> Input Phonemic representation of words<br />Phonological Rules<br />Outputt Phonetic representation of words <br />39<br />
  • 40. From One to Many – From Many to One<br />Rarely is a single phoneme realized<br />as one and only one phone. <br />Consider the vowels in the <br />following pairs of words: <br />A - compete B - competition<br /> medicinal medicine<br /> solid solidity<br />In column A, all underlined vowels are stressed with a variety of vowel phones; in column B, the underlined<br /> vowels are pronounced as schwa.<br />40<br />
  • 41. The Flap Rule<br />Flap is a rapid movement of the tongue tip from a retracted vertical position to a horizontal position, during which the tongue brushes the alveolar ridge.<br />When /t/ or /d/ occurs between a stressed and an unstressed vowel, they both become a “flap.”<br /> The following words sound similar:<br />auntie/Annie metal/medal<br /> planter/planner coating/coding<br /> futile/feudal waiter/wader<br /> latter/ladder matter/madder<br /> Can you name any others?<br />41<br />
  • 42. Neutralization <br />Neutralization is a merger of a contrast in certain contexts or specified environment<br />Some examples of neutralization<br />Before /g/ are:<br /> bag egg<br /> Greg keg<br /> leg peg<br />Can you name any others?<br />42<br />
  • 43. Slips of the Tongue<br />Unintentional speech errors show phonological rules in action. We all make speech errors, and they tell us something about language and its use. Consider:<br />Intended Utterance Actual Utterance<br />gone to seed god to seen<br />stick in the mud smuck in the tid<br />speech pronunciation preach seduction<br />43<br />
  • 44. Word Stress<br />In many languages, including English, one or more of the syllables in every content word is stressed.<br />(the words to, the, of, a are functional/support words). A<br />stressed syllable, marked by an accute accent (‘) is more prominent in the following examples:<br />Pervert noun as in My neighbor is a pervert.<br />Pervert verb as in Don’t pervert the idea. Can you think of other examples?<br />44<br />
  • 45. Stress can be shown by placing a 1 over the primary stressed syllable, a 2 over the syllable with secondary stress, and leaving unstressed vowels unmarked. Place the appropriate stress marks on these words?<br />fundamental introductory secondary<br />Stress is the property of the syllable rather than a segment. To produce a stressed syllable, you may change the pitch, make the syllable louder, or make it longer. We often use all three of these phonetic means to stress a syllable.<br />45<br />
  • 46. In English we place primary stress on the adjectival part of a compound noun.<br />But, we place stress on the noun when<br />the words are a noun phrase consisting of <br />an adjective followed by a noun. Consider<br />where you would place the primary stress:<br />Compound Noun Adjective + Noun<br /> tightrope tight rope<br /> redcoat red coat<br /> hotdog hot dog<br /> White House white house<br />46<br />
  • 47. Pitch and Intonation<br />Pitch plays an important role in tone & intonation.<br />Say: John is going home.<br /> What’s in the tea, honey?<br />Falling pitch at the end indicates a statement.<br />Pitch rising at the end may indicate a question.<br />47<br />
  • 48. Phonolactic Constraints are language specific combinations of phonemes.<br />In Japanese, the /st/ consonant cluster<br /> is not allowed – while it exists in English<br />In English, the sounds /kn/ and /gn/<br /> are not permitted at the beginning<br /> of a new word – however, they do<br /> exist in both German and Dutch<br />48<br />
  • 49. Lexical Gaps<br />Advertisers often use possible but<br />nonoccurring words for new<br />products –<br />Xerox Bic Kodak Spam<br />Other words like creck and cruck<br />are nonsense words found in the lexicon – often called Lexical Gaps<br />Can you name some others?<br />49<br />
  • 50. Why Do Phonological Rules Exist?<br />Because languages have general principles that constrain possible sequences of sounds.<br />The rules specify minimal modifications of the<br />underlying forms that bring them in line with<br />the surface constraints.<br />Thus, we find different variants of a particular<br />underlying form depending on the phonological<br />context. <br /> One example is the English past-tense rule.<br /> Can you think of any others?<br />50<br />
  • 51. Optimality Theory<br />This proposal holds that a universal<br /> set of ranked constraints with <br /> higher ranked constraints taking<br /> preference over lower ranked ones,<br /> exists with the entire system <br /> governing the phonological rules.<br /> One example is the plural rule.<br /> Can you name any others?<br />51<br />
  • 52. Phonological Analysis: Discovering Phonemes<br />Phonology shows that sounds can<br />be grouped into units/phonemes<br />Example: There is only one /p/<br />phoneme in English – but that<br />phoneme has 2 sound variations&l
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