Co-Articulation between Consonant and Vowel in Cantonese Syllables
Authors: Wai-Sum Lee
This study investigates C-V and V-C co-articulation in Cantonese monosyllables of the CV, VC or CVC structure, with C = one of the three stop consonants [p, t, k] and V = one of the three corner vowels [i, a, u]. Five repetitions of each test syllable on a randomized list were elicited from Cantonese young adult speakers in their early-20s. A research tool, EMA AG500, was used to record the synchronized audio signals and articulatory data at three different locations of the tongue – tongue tip, tongue middle, and tongue back – and the positions of the upper and lower lips during the test syllables. The main findings based on the articulatory data collected from two male Cantonese speakers are as follows: (i) For the syllable-initial [p-], strong co-articulation is observed when [p-] preceding the high vowel [i] or [u], but not the low vowel [a]. As for the syllable-final [-p], it is strongly co-articulated with the preceding vowel, even when the vowel is [a]. (ii) The co-articulation between the initial [t-] and the following vowel of any type is weak. In the syllable-final position, the degree of co-articulatory resistance of [-t] is also large when following the vowel [u], but [-t] is largely co-articulated with the preceding vowel when the vowel is [i] or [a]. (iii) The strength of co-articulation differs when the initial [k-] precedes the different types of vowel. A stronger co-articulation between [k-] and [i] than between [k-] and [u], and the strength of co-articulation is much reduced between [k-] and [a]. However, in the syllable-final position, there is strong co-articulation between [-k] and the preceding vowel [a]. (iv) Among the three types of stop consonants in the syllable-initial position, the decreasing degree of co-articulatory resistance (CR) is [t-] > [k-] > [p-], and the degree of CR is reduced during all three types of stop in the syllable-final position. In general, the data on co-articulation between consonant and vowel in the Cantonese monosyllables are similar to those in other languages reported in previous studies.
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1128935Procedia APA BibTeX Chicago EndNote Harvard JSON MLA RIS XML ISO 690 PDF Downloads 662
 H. Sweet, Handbook of Phonetics. Oxford: Claendon, 1877.
 M. Joos, “Acoustic Phonetics,” Language Monograph, no. 23, Suppl. 24, 1948.
 B. Lindblom, On Vowel Reduction. Report no. 29, The Royal Institute of Technology, Speech Transmission Laboratory, Stockholm, Sweden, 1963.
 B. Lindblom, “Spectrographic study of vowel reduction,” Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol. 35, no. 11, 1963, pp. 1773–1781.
 K. N. Stevens and A. S. House, “Perturbation of vowel articulations by consonantal context: an acoustical study,” Journal of Speech and Hearing Research, vol. 6, no. 2, 1963, pp. 111–128.
 V. A. Kozhenikov and L. A. Chistovich, Speech: Articulation and Perception. (English translation from Russian.) U.S. Department of Commerce, Clearing House for Federal Scientific and Technical Information, no. 30. Washington D.C.: Joint Publications Research Service, 1965.
 D. Krull, “Second formant locus patterns as a measure of consonant-vowel co-articulation,” Experimental Research, Institute of Linguistics, University of Stockholm (PERILUS), no. V, 1987, pp. 43–61.
 D. Krull, Diana, “Consonant-vowel co-articulation in spontaneous speech and in reference words,” (Doctoral dissertation) Experimental Research, Institute of Linguistics, University of Stockholm (PERILUS), no. VII, 1988, p. 1–149.
 D. Krull, “Second formant locus patterns and consonant-vowel co-articulation in spontaneous speech,” Phonetic Experimental Research, Institute of Linguistics, University of Stockholm (PERILUS), no. X, 1989, pp. 87–108.
 H. M. Sussman, H. A. McCaffrey, and S. A. Matthews, “An investigation of locus equations as a source of relational invariance for stop place categorization,” Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol. 90, no. 3, 1991, pp. 1309–1325.
 C. A. Fowler, “Invariants, specifiers, cues: an investigation of locus equations as information for place of articulation,” Perception & Psychophysics, vol. 55, no. 6, 1994, pp. 597–610.
 H. M. Sussman, N. Bessell, E. Dalston, and T. Majors, “An investigation of stop place of articulation as a function of syllable position: a locus equation perspective,” Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol. 101, no. 5, 1997, pp. 2825–2838.
 L. Brancazio and C. A. Fowler, “On the relevance of locus equations for production and perception of stop consonants,” Perception & Psychophysics, vol. 60, no. 1, 1998, pp. 24–50.
 T. M. Nearey and S. E. Shammass, “Formant transitions as partly distinctive invariant properties in the identification of voiced stops,” Journal of the Canadian Acoustical Association (Canadian Acoustics), vol. 15, no. 4, 1987, pp. 17–24.
 D. Recasens, “Coarticulatory patterns and degrees of coarticulatory resistance in Catalan CV sequences,” Language and Speech, vol. 28, no. 2, 1985, pp. 97–114.
 D. Duez, “Second formant locus-nucleus patterns: an investigation of spontaneous French speech,” Speech Communication, vol. 11, 1992, pp. 417–427.
 H. M. Sussman, K. A. Hoemeke, and F. S. Ahmed, “A cross-linguistic investigation of locus equations as a phonetic descriptor for place of articulation,” Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol. 94, no. 3, 1993, pp. 1256–1268.
 E. M. Celdrán and X. Villalba, “Locus equations as a metrics for place of articulation in automatic speech recognition,” in Proceedings of the XIIIth International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, Stockholm, Sweden, 1995, vol. 1, pp. 30–33.
 M. Tabain and A. Butcher, “Stop consonants in Yanyuwa and Yindjibarndi: locus equation data,” Journal of Phonetics, vol. 27, 1999, pp. 333–357.
 G. Modarresi, H. Sussman, B. Lindblom, and E. Burlingame, “ Stop place coding: an acoustic study of CV, VC#, and C#V sequences,” Phonetica, vol. 61, 2004, pp. 2–21.
 M. Redford and R. Diehl, “The relative perceptual distinctiveness of initial and final consonants in CVC syllables,” Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol. 106, no. 3, 1999, pp. 1555–1565.
 S. Graetzer, “Consonantal co-articulation resistance in vowel-consonant-vowel sequences in two Australian languages,” in Proceedings of the 11th Australian International Conference on Speech Science & Technology, Auckland, New Zealand, 2006, pp. 270–275.
 D. Recasens, “V-to-C co-articulation in Catalan VCV sequences: an articulatory and acoustical study,” Journal of Phonetics, vol. 12, 1984, pp. 61–73.
 E. Farnetani, “V-C-V lingual co-articulation and its spatiotemporal domain,” in Speech Production and Speech Modelling, W. J. Hardcastle, and A. Marchal, Eds. The Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1990, pp. 93–130.
 D. Recasens and A. Espinosa, “An articulatory investigation of lingual coarticulatory resistance and aggressiveness for consonants and vowels in Catalan,” Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol. 125, no. 4, 2009, pp. 2288–2298.
 C. A. Fowler and L. Brancazio, “Co-articulation resistance of American English consonants and its effects on transconsonantal vowel-to-vowel co-articulation,” Language and Speech, vol. 43, no. 1, 2000, pp. 1–41.
 K. Iskarous, C. A. Fowler, and D. H. Whalen, “Locus equations are an acoustic expression of articulator synergy,” Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol. 128, no. 4, 2010, pp. 2021–2032.
 Y.C. Chen, W. R. Chen, Y. C. Chang, and F. F. Hsieh, “Comparison of the co-articulation patterns for the syllable-initial and syllable-final consonants in Taiwanese,” Proceedings of the International Conference on Phonetics of the Languages in China, Hong Kong, China, 2013, pp.101–103.
 J. S. Perkell, M. H. Cohen, M. A. Svirsky, M. L. Matthies, I. Garabieta, and M. T. T. Jackson, “Electromagnetic midsagittal articulometer systems for transducing speech articulatory movements,” Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, vol. 92, no. 6, 1992, pp. 3078–3096.
 V. L. Gracco, “Electromagnetic articulography: a brief overview,” in Proceedings of the XIIIth International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, Stockholm, Sweden, 1995, vol. 4, pp. 58–61.
 P. Hoole, “Issues in the acquisition, processing, reduction and parameterization of articulographic data,” Forschungsberichte des Instituts für Phonetik und Sprachliche Kommunikation, München (FIPKM), vol. 34, 1996, pp. 158–173.