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

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

Processing of Word-Initial Vowels in French: A Production-Perception Perspective

Yohann Meynadier (1), Cécile Fougeron (2), Christine Meunier (1)

(1) Laboratoire Parole et Langage, CNRS ESA 6057, Université de Provence, Aix-en-Provence, France
(2) Laboratoire de Psycholinguistique Expérimentale, Université de Genève, Switzerland

In this paper we ask whether coarticulation patterns similarly across and within lexical units in production. We hypothesize that word onsets are more resistant to coarticulation in order to preserve the canonical form of lexical entries. We look at acoustic and articulatory (EPG) cues of coarticulation in pairs of CV where vowel is either word-initial or word-internal. In addition, in a perceptual experiment, we test whether a reduction of coarticulation at word onset can preserve initial phoneme identity. Vowels of CV and C#V sequences are presented in isolation to listeners. Results do not show robust tendencies. Nevertheless, vowels in word-initial position tend to be more open than in word-internal position. This phenomena seems to be perceived by listeners.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Meynadier, Yohann / Fougeron, Cécile / Meunier, Christine (1999): "Processing of word-initial vowels in French: a production-perception perspective", In ICPhS-14, 1083-1086.