4aSC30. Gestural overlap analysis of lenis stop reduction in Korean.

Session: Thursday Morning, May 16

Author: Sook-hyang Lee
Location: Dept. of English Language and Literature, Wonkwang Univ., Iksan, Korea 570-749


Korean lenis stops have been reported to become voiced intervocalically (Kagaya, 1974) and are often reduced to sonorants in casual speech with different degrees of reduction depending on the place of articulation (Lee, 1995). Velar lenis stops are more often reduced than the labials and coronals, which makes sense from the point of view of articulatory phonology (Browman and Goldstein, 1990). The oral gesture for a velar stop is on the same vocal tract tier (tongue body tier) as the neighboring vowels, so it should be more affected by overlap and blending with the vowel gestures than the closure gestures for other stops. This study investigates in what vowel environments lenis stop closure shows the most reduction. /VCV/ tokens in carrier sentences were recorded and acoustic analysis was done. The results showed that generally, reducing lenis stop closure is most in the environment of preceding and following low vowels, and least in the environment of high vowels, where the tongue body gestures of neighboring vowels are more compatible with the stop's gesture. Labials, especially when they are in the high rounded vowel environment, showed a larger amount of reduction, which makes sense from the point of view of articulatory phonology, since one of the oral gestures for a labial stop is on the same vocal tract tier, lip tier, as the surrounding rounded vowels.

from ASA 131st Meeting, Indianapolis, May 1996