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

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003

Då or Tå, Pår or Bår - Seeing is Believing!

Fredrik Karlsson (1), Kirk P. H. Sullivan (1), Jan van Doorn (1), Peter E. Czigler (2)

(1) Umeå University, Sweden
(2) Örebro University, Sweden

Several acoustic properties of plosives have been established as correlates of voicing contrast, including voice onset time (VOT), F1 cut-back, aspiration duration and initial F1 and F2 transition. Therefore, acquisition of the voicing contrast for plosives could be viewed as gaining the ability to combine interacting acoustic cues in an adult-like manner, resulting in a large number of possible developmental routes. The presented investigation examined initial plosives produced by one child from ages 18-31 months that had been judged as voiced in an auditory analysis. The results show that some perceptually voiced and unaspirated plosives (elicited using voiceless targets) were produced with VOT values within the range of voiceless plosives for adult speakers of Swedish, and also had increased duration of high frequency, aperiodic friction after plosive release. It was conjectured that the child was attempting a voicing contrast by using increased VOT and increased duration of aperiodic friction that were not perceptible to adult listeners.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Karlsson, Fredrik / Sullivan, Kirk P. H. / Doorn, Jan van / Czigler, Peter E. (2003): "Då or Tå, Pår or Bår - seeing is believing!", In ICPhS-15, 1967-1970.