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

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003

Hesitation Disfluencies in Swedish: Prosodic and Segmental Correlates

Merle Horne, Johan Frid, Birgitta Lastow, Gösta Bruce, Adina Svensson

Lund University, Sweden

The conjunctions att 'that' and och 'and' in Swedish are examined with the goal of finding prosodic and segmental cues distinguishing between their occurrence in fluent and hesitation disfluency contexts (when followed by a pause). Analysis of data indicates the following major tendencies: 1. the mean F0 in the function words does not differ significantly in hesitation and fluent contexts whereas segmental characteristics do indeed differ, 2. Vowel duration in att and och is longer before hesitations, 3. The duration of the final aspiration phase in att and och is longer before hesitations, 4. A relationship of complementary distribution is observed to exist between filled pauses and final aspiration, perhaps signalling different kinds of on-going activity in the planning of the following speech fragment. Aspiration phases over 80 ms tend not to be followed by filled pauses.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Horne, Merle / Frid, Johan / Lastow, Birgitta / Bruce, Gösta / Svensson, Adina (2003): "Hesitation disfluencies in Swedish: prosodic and segmental correlates", In ICPhS-15, 2429-2432.