14th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-14)

San Francisco, CA, USA
August 1-7, 1999


An EPG Study of Palatalisation in French

Caroline Corneau

Phonology Laboratory, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Belgium

This paper studies palatalisation gestures that are present in the realisation of phonemes /t/ and /d/ in French. Production of these consonants in different vowel or approximant contexts by four Belgium French speakers is compared with that of /t+ʃ/ and /d+ʒ/ sequences by the same speakers. This study deals with temporal aspects (based on acoustic output and EPG), articulatory patterns (EPG) and devoicing phenomena. Influence of the environment on the place of articulation is studied to establish coarticulation patterns. Results are examined in terms of co-ordination patterns to explain variations of realisation and palatalisation in two French variants (Belgium, and Quebec, where palatalisation leads to affricated realisations), these patterns being shown to result from biomechanical constraints on the articulators. Results are also compared with diachronic data to propose explanations to French evolution patterns.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Corneau, Caroline (1999): "An EPG study of palatalisation in French", In ICPhS-14, 61-64.