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Prosodic boundary cues in German: Evidence from the production and perception of bracketed lists

Abstract : This study investigates prosodic phrasing of bracketed lists in German. We analyze variation in pauses, phrase-final lengthening and f0 in speech production and how these cues affect boundary perception. In line with the literature, it was found that pauses are often used to signal intonation phrase boundaries, while final lengthening and f0 are employed across different levels of the prosodic hierarchy. Deviations from expectations based on the standard syntax-prosody mapping are interpreted in terms of task-specific effects. That is, we argue that speakers add/delete prosodic boundaries to enhance the phonological contrast between different bracketings in the experimental task. In perception, three experiments were run, in which we tested only single cues (but temporally distributed at different locations of the sentences). Results from identification tasks and reaction time measurements indicate that pauses lead to a more abrupt shift in listeners' prosodic judgments, while f0 and final lengthening are exploited in a more gradient manner. Hence, pauses, final lengthening and f0 have an impact on boundary perception, though listeners show different sensitivity to the three acoustic cues.
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Contributor : Caterina Petrone <>
Submitted on : Tuesday, February 7, 2017 - 11:21:13 AM
Last modification on : Monday, June 15, 2020 - 12:00:33 PM
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Caterina Petrone, Hubert Truckenbrodt, Caroline Wellmann, Julia Holzgrefe-Lang, Isabell Wartenburger, et al.. Prosodic boundary cues in German: Evidence from the production and perception of bracketed lists. Journal of Phonetics, Elsevier, 2017, 61, pp.71-92. ⟨10.1016/j.wocn.2017.01.002⟩. ⟨halshs-01459190⟩



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