15th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-15)

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003


On Phonetic Aspects of Tonal Register Feature

Jenny J. Liu (1), Harvey D. Blankespoor (1), William S-Y. Wang (2)

(1) Hope College, USA
(2) City University of Hong Kong, China

Register, when referring specifically to the subdivision of tone space, has received much attention in phonology. However, questions as to how many registers a tone space should be divided into, and where the boundary between registers should be located, are still debatable. Furthermore, regarding the phonetic implementation of previous phonological claims concerning register feature, it is rarely seen to be addressed in the literature. Data presented in the paper offer a preliminary discussion on phonetic aspects of register feature, primarily in the following aspects: (1) articulatory behavior with respect to register feature; (2) register effect in tonal coarticulation; and (3) register effect in lexical tone perception. These data provide a clear picture of the phonetic behavior of tones with respect to register feature. They further suggest the need for and the possibility of conducting phonological research on a reliable and firm phonetic basis.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Liu, Jenny J. / Blankespoor, Harvey D. / Wang, William S-Y. (2003): "On phonetic aspects of tonal register feature", In ICPhS-15, 953-956.