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

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

Prosodic and Lexical Correlates of Swedish Discourse Markers in Spontaneous Dialogue

Petra Hansson

Department of Linguistics and Phonetics, Lund University, Sweden

Discourse markers are words or phrases that speakers use at the beginning of a contribution to signal how it relates to prior discourse. They mark changes in the global discourse structure by e.g. signalling the beginning of a new topic or the return to a previous topic. However, words that are used as discourse markers often also have a sentential function. If discourse markers are to be used in speech processing algorithms to facilitate the detection of topic shifts, it is therefore necessary to find features that distinguish discourse from sentential uses. This study reports on the Swedish discourse markers men ‘but’/‘and’ and ‘so’. The results show that men and along with their prosodic and lexical correlates can provide important cues to the structure of a dialogue.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Hansson, Petra (1999): "Prosodic and lexical correlates of Swedish discourse markers in spontaneous dialogue", In ICPhS-14, 1533-1536.