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

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

Recognizing German Dialects by Prosodic Features Alone

Felix Schaeffler, Robert Summers

IPSK - Department of Phonetics and Speech Communication, University of Munich, Germany

The prosodic characteristics of German dialects have seldom been the subject of research. Therefore a perceptual experiment was designed to find out whether there are prosodic cues in the speech signal strong enough to identify the origin of the speaker. Spontaneous monologues from 70 speakers were used as items. 16 subjects participated in the experiment. The monologues were taken from the Munich RVG1 corpus. A delexicalization procedure was applied to the speech data. Seven main regions of German dialects were used as categories. The aims of the study were to find out whether there are perceptable differences between the prosodic features of the dialects and whether the dialects differ in the saliency of their prosodic characteristics. The results suggest that there are prosodic characteristics for some dialect groups. Good recognition rates were found for south-west and north-west dialects. A north vs. south contrast seems to be a salient feature.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Schaeffler, Felix / Summers, Robert (1999): "Recognizing German dialects by prosodic features alone", In ICPhS-14, 2311-2314.