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Speaking rate and spectral context affect the Dutch /a/ - /aa/ contrast

MPS-Authors
http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons1646

Sjerps,  Matthias J.
Language Comprehension Group, MPI for Psycholinguistics, Max Planck Society;
Mechanisms and Representations in Comprehending Speech, MPI for Psycholinguistics, Max Planck Society;

http://pubman.mpdl.mpg.de/cone/persons/resource/persons151

Reinisch,  Eva
Language Comprehension Group, MPI for Psycholinguistics, Max Planck Society;
Mechanisms and Representations in Comprehending Speech, MPI for Psycholinguistics, Max Planck Society;

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Fulltext (public)

NVP2009_Sjerps_Reinisch.pdf
(Postprint), 102KB

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Citation

Sjerps, M. J., & Reinisch, E. (2009). Speaking rate and spectral context affect the Dutch /a/ - /aa/ contrast. Poster presented at 12th NVP Winter Conference on Cognition, Brain, and Behaviour (Dutch Psychonomic Society), Egmond aan Zee, the Netherlands.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0012-63FC-1
Abstract
Dutch minimal word pairs such as 'gaas'-'gas' ("gauze"-"gas") differ in durational and spectral aspects of their vowels. These cues, however, are interpreted relative to the context in which they are heard. In a fast context, an "a" sounds relatively longer and is more likely to be interpreted as "aa". Similarly, when low frequencies in a context are perceived as dominant, high frequencies in the "a" become more salient, again more often leading to perception of "aa". A categorization experiment in which durational and spectral cues to the vowels were varied confirmed that Dutch listeners use both dimensions to distinguish between "a" and "aa". In Experiment 2, words were presented in rate- and spectrally manipulated sentences. Listeners, as predicted, interpreted the vowels relative to the context. An eye-tracking experiment will investigate the time course of these context effects and thus inform theories of the role of context in speech recognition.