14th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-14)
San Francisco, CA, USA
This paper investigates spontaneous speech in Japanese,
particularly phonetic phenomena that do not normally occur in
carefully pronounced formal speech. I discuss several
pronunciation variations in a corpus, including reduction or
deletion of both vowels and consonants.
In this study, I also analyzed a specific speech utterance, which has a combination of some of those pronunciation variations, in detail. It was often difficult to identify each segment in the utterance solely by listening to just the few segments themselves (micro-listening), even if listening to the entire phrase (macrolistening) sounded intelligible. I conducted a perceptual experiment using this utterance; the results showed that the same speech segment was perceived as two morae by micro-listening and as five morae by macro-listening.
Listeners use a combination of temporal and contextual cues to reconstruct a speaker's intentions, although the phenomena found in spontaneous speech show that phonetic segments may change their appearance.
Bibliographic reference. Arai, Takayuki (1999): "A case study of spontaneous speech in Japanese", In ICPhS-14, 615-618.