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

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

Locus Equations and Place of Articulation of Catalan Stops as a Function of Syllabic Position

Eugenio Martínez-Celdrán, Josep Matas-Crespo, Alicia Ortega-Escandell

Laboratori de Fonètica, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain

Previous research has provided sufficient evidence that locus equations are a good predictor of place of articulation. They permit to classify stops unambiguously according to place of articulation in various languages including English, Spanish and Arabic.
   Sussman et al. investigated the validity of locus equations in English for syllable positions other than initial. Likewise, the present study explores the case of Catalan, a Romance language which has non-aspirated stops, both at the syllabic onset and coda. In word-final position, stops take the voicing characteristics of the following consonant (we put the words in a context that allowed the appearance of both voiced and voiceless final stops).
   We analysed the validity of locus equations for stops at both word-initial and word-final positions. Four measures of comparison have been taken into account: slope, y-intercept, R2 and SE. For the slope and the y-intercept we can state that there are highly significant differences among the three places of articulation in both positions: onset and coda. Within each stop, only labials showed significant differences between syllabic onset and coda. Contrary to Sussman's results, there are no differences for any place of articulation for R2 and SE between onset and coda. Probably, this is due to the differences in the realization of English and Catalan stops, as Catalan stops are produced with the approximately the same articulatory precision in both positions.


Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Martínez-Celdrán, Eugenio / Matas-Crespo, Josep / Ortega-Escandell, Alicia (1999): "Locus equations and place of articulation of Catalan stops as a function of syllabic position", In ICPhS-14, 2133-2136.