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

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003

L2 Influence on L1 Speech in the Production of VOT

Tetsuo Harada

University of Oregon, USA

This research investigates the effect of the acquisition of English voice onset time (VOT) by early Japanese English bilinguals on their production of the Japanese counterparts in L1. The data were collected from 6 monolingual English speakers, 6 monolingual Japanese speakers, and 6 early Japanese English bilinguals. Results show that the early bilinguals, who speak Japanese at home and English elsewhere, make a distinction between Japanese and English VOT regardless of the place of articulation. This means that the bilinguals have successfully established two different phonetic categories for Japanese and English; however, their Japanese VOT values have ended up being longer than those of the Japanese monolinguals, while their English categories are not statistically different from those of the English monolingual group. This may imply that in order to maintain phonetic contrast in a common phonological space not L2 sounds but L1 sounds can be deviated from L1 phonetic categories.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Harada, Tetsuo (2003): "L2 influence on L1 speech in the production of VOT", In ICPhS-15, 1085-1088.