ASA 129th Meeting - Washington, DC - 1995 May 30 .. Jun 06

4aSC9. Are coronals different? The influence of the lexicon on coronal identification.

Rochelle Newman

James R. Sawusch

Paul Luce

Dept. of Psych., Park Hall, SUNY, Buffalo, NY 14260

In previous studies of lexical effects on phoneme identification, robust effects have been reported for voicing series with noncoronal places of articulation (e.g., /b/--/p/ or /g/--/k/). These same effects have been much more variable, smaller, and often absent for coronal voicing series (/d/--/t/). Previously, results were presented suggesting that neighborhood density could have effects similar to those of lexical status in phoneme identification tasks for noncoronals. For coronals, neighborhood density did not have an effect, again paralleling the lexical results. In new studies, additional coronal stimuli have been tested. Series have used word--nonword series to examine the influence of lexical status and nonword--nonword series to examine the influence of lexical neighborhood (the number of words similar to the target). The new stimuli included /d/--/t/ series where the initial stop is part of a consonant cluster. The results for /d/--/t/ series in clusters show robust lexical influences on phoneme identification. These results will be discussed in terms of their implications regarding the status of coronals and the nature of consonants in clusters. [Work supported by NIDCD Grant DC00219 to SUNY at Buffalo.]