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Nordic Prosody

Proceedings of the Xth Conference, Helsinki 2008

Edited By Martti Vainio, Reijo Aulanko and Olli Aaltonen

This volume contains the revised texts of talks and posters given at the Nordic Prosody X conference, held at the University of Helsinki, in August 2008. The contributions by Scandinavian and other researchers cover a wide range of prosody-related topics from various theoretical and methodological points of view. Although the history of the conference series is Nordic and Scandinavian, the current volume presents studies that are of mainly Baltic origin in the sense that of the eight languages presented in the proceedings only English is not natively spoken around the Baltic Sea. Research issues addressed in the 25 articles include various aspects of speech prosody, their regional variation within and across languages as well as social and idiolectal variation. Speech technology and modelling of prosody are also addressed in more than one article.


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1. Some prosodic properties of South-East Norwegian flight attendant speech 9


SOME PROSODIC PROPERTIES OF SOUTH- EAST NORWEGIAN FLIGHT ATTENDANT SPEECH Jardar Eggesbø Abrahamsen 1 Introduction When flight attendants make their announcements, they often treat the tonal material in ways that would be classified as ungrammatical in normal speech. Nevertheless, flight attendant speech is produced by actual speakers of an actual language, and when they talk to individual passengers, the flight attendants do use normal Norwegian intonation. They are also aware of the phenomenon, and label it ‘flight attendant speech’ (flyvertinnespråk). I will use that label, as opposed to ‘normal speech’. My data is very limited, it only covers a few utterances from two flight attendants, and so the paper will focus on only three traits of their prosody: the length of the Accentual Phrase, association of tones and post-focal updrift. 2 Preliminaries The Accentual Phrase (AP) is, in Norwegian linguistic tradition (e.g. Fretheim, 1981; Nilsen, 1992:28f; Kristoffersen, 2000:239f, all with different terminology), a prosodic domain whose first syllable carries primary stress, and which (most often) ends in the last syllable before the next primary stress, alternatively in the last syllable of the utterance if there is no subsequent stress syllable. South-East Norwegian has two word accents, just as most Norwegian and Swedish varieties, and the AP contains two or three tones, depending on the word accent: Accent 1 begins with a Low tone on the stressed syllable, and has a High boundary tone on the last Tone-Bearing Unit (TBU) of the AP. In Accent 2 the tonal...

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