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

Barcelona, Spain
August 3-9, 2003


Articulatory Features of Tones in Whispered Chinese

Man Gao (1), John H. Esling (2)

(1) Yale University, USA
(2) University of Victoria, Canada

Whisper is a common modality of speech communication, regardless of language. Fibre-optic laryngoscopic photographs in research by Esling (2002) show that the vocal folds are parted for whisper, but that the laryngeal aryepiglottic sphincter is engaged during whisper inquiring from the perspective of the vertical plane into the larynx. The objective of this study is to seek further evidence on the existence of sphincter mechanism during whisper and investigate how whispered tones are produced Laryngoscopic endoscopy is used to observe the pharynx and larynx when Mandarin tones are produced. Comparisons are made between phonated and whispered speech and among four Mandarin tones, and a set of relationship among sphinctering, larynx height and tongue root retraction is illustrated.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Gao, Man / Esling, John H. (2003): "Articulatory features of tones in whispered Chinese", In ICPhS-15, 2629-2632.