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Lexical Tone Effects on Voice Onset Time in Cantonese

Tse, Holman (2012) Lexical Tone Effects on Voice Onset Time in Cantonese. In: Workshop on Innovations in Cantonese Linguistics (WICL), 16 March 2012 - 16 March 2012, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH.

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This study investigates the effects of lexical tone on the Voice Onset Time (VOT) of prevocalic stops in Cantonese. Previous studies that have examined the relationship between tone and VOT include studies on Mandarin and Hakka (Chen et al 2009), Shanghainese (King and Schieffer 1990), Taiwanese (Lai 2004), Mazatec (Herrera 2003), and Kera (Pearce 2009). These studies have shown mixed results. Research on more languages is needed in order to determine whether or not any cross-linguistic generalizations can be made. For the present study, the specific research questions to be addressed are (1) Does tone have an effect on VOT in Cantonese?; (2) If so, what kind of an effect does it have?; and (3) Is this effect purely an automatic articulatory consequence of F0 modulation or is this effect also mediated by lexical tone and hence a potential cue that contributes towards maintaining phonological contrasts between different tonal categories? To address these questions, the speech of 6 native speakers (5 male and 1 female) of Hong Kong Cantonese was examined. All recordings were made in a sound proof room. The subjects were all students at a US university at the time of recording. A total of 80 tokens of words contrasting in tone and aspiration were analyzed for each speaker for a grand total of 480 tokens. Results from an ANOVA test showed that there is a statistically significant effect (p


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Tse, Holmanhbt3@pitt.eduHBT30000-0002-2398-5776
Date: 16 March 2012
Date Type: Publication
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Event Title: Workshop on Innovations in Cantonese Linguistics (WICL)
Event Dates: 16 March 2012 - 16 March 2012
Event Type: Conference
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Linguistics
Refereed: Yes
Official URL:
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 08 Sep 2015 14:15
Last Modified: 18 Jun 2019 05:55


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