ASA 130th Meeting - St. Louis, MO - 1995 Nov 27 .. Dec 01

2aSC7. Production and perception of consonant coarticulation in Taiwanese.

Shu-hui Peng

Dept. of Linguistics, Ohio State Univ., 222 Oxley Hall, 1712 Neil Ave., Columbus, OH 43210

Taiwanese coda stop consonants are unreleased, so that their place of articulation tends to be confused with that of the initial consonant of any following syllable. This traditionally is described as place assimilation--i.e., categorical feature change. Recent phonetic theories suggest an alternative description in terms of a continuous variation in degree of coarticulatory overlap between consonants. This study investigates the production and perception of coda consonants before different following onset consonants. Productions by six subjects were analyzed using electropalatographic (EPG) and acoustic measurements. Perception was examined using the concept formation paradigm. Preliminary data suggest that apparent place assimilation in Taiwanese is a noncategorical gestural coarticulation. The latency of the second gesture with respect to the first decreased as speech rate increased, so that gestural reduction was found in the production of every subject in normal and fast speech rates. The dental gesture was deleted more frequently than the velar gesture. In the perception test, the identification of coda place became worse as the latency of the second gesture decreased, so that the coda's gesture was overlapped more by the following onset gesture.