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Nordic Prosody

Proceedings of the XIIth Conference, Trondheim 2016

Edited By Jardar Eggesbö Abrahamsen, Jacques Koreman and Wim van Dommelen

This volume contains articles based on the presentations given at the Nordic Prosody XII conference, which was held at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (Trondheim, Norway) in August 2016. The contributors investigate various prosodic aspects, including intonation, rhythm, speaking rate, intensity, and breathing, using approaches ranging from phonetic and phonological analysis to speech technology methods. While most of the studies examine read speech, some of them explore the prosodics of spontaneous speech. The languages that receive most attention are Norwegian, Swedish and Icelandic as well as Estonian, Latgalian and Polish. In addition to the larger Nordic languages, several papers focus on regional languages spoken in these areas.

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F0 declination in read vs. spontaneous Estonian (Eva Liina Asu / Pärtel Lippus / Heete Sahkai / Nele Salveste)


Eva Liina Asu, Pärtel Lippus, Heete Sahkai, Nele Salveste

F0 declination in read vs. spontaneous Estonian

Abstract: The present study examines F0 declination in read Estonian comparing the results to a recent investigation on declination in spontaneous Estonian (Asu, Lippus, Salveste, & Sahkai, 2016). It emerges that in both read and spontaneous speech, longer phrases have a shallower declination and higher phrase-initial F0 than shorter phrases. In read speech, however, both longer and shorter phrases display a constant phrase-final low for each speaker, unlike in spontaneous speech where longer phrases tend to have a lower phrase-final F0. The study additionally addresses between- and within-speaker variability in declination characteristics in the two speaking styles.

1. Introduction

1.1 Background

The present study investigates F0 declination in read and spontaneous Estonian. F0 declination is the gradual lowering of pitch within an intonation phrase (IP) that has been explained by both physiological and linguistic processes (for an overview see e.g. Cohen et al., 1982; Fuchs et al., 2015). The linguistically controlled nature of declination has been linked to phrasal preplanning of speech, suggesting that declination is planned in advance according to the intended length of the phrase. Thus, phrasal preplanning of F0 declination (or the lack of it) is evidenced in the relationship between utterance duration and declination slope, as well as utterance duration and the height of the initial F0 peak. It has been shown by a number of studies that longer...

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