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LINGUIST List 21.816

Wed Feb 17 2010

Qs: Speech Rhythm in English

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        1.    Lussineh Vanyan, Speech Rhythm in English

Message 1: Speech Rhythm in English
Date: 23-Jan-2010
From: Lussineh Vanyan <lvanyanrambler.ru>
Subject: Speech Rhythm in English
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Dear LINGUIST List subscribers,

My research is for my PhD focuses comparative analyses of English
and Armenian rhythm. Viewing rhythm as a complex structure of
periodic events we aim at giving a thorough theoretical framework on
the nature of speech rhythm, basic units of rhythmic hierarchy,
typologically studying English and Armenian rhythm, and also rhythmic
alternation of accented and non-accented words and comparison of
acoustic parameters in the languages under study.

As rhythm is defined as a sequence of accented and unaccented
elements we studied the accentual status of Armenian form words,
some of which occurred to be under stress. We tried to find some
English articles on the accentuation of English form words. I came
across a bibliography on "Prosodic emphasis of function words" and
got a slight notion, but could not find the works listed. If anyone could
direct me, on how to find more on the accentuation of form words and
phrasal accent in English, I would be grateful.

Another point of our research encompasses the statistical distribution
of rhythmic units belonging to different parts of speech - nouns, verbs,
adjectives, function words and their combinations. This is pioneering
work in the sphere of Armenian phonetics and we have done it. But
could I get similar data for comparing it with English? Or, should I do it
myself?

I have consulted such authors as Антипова А. М., «Ритмическая
Система Английской Речи», Потапов В. В., «Динамика и статика
речевого ритма. Сравнительное исследование на материале
славянских и германских языков», 2004, Abercrombie D., "Studies in
Phonetics and Linguistics", B. Hayes, "Metrical Stress Theory:
principles and Case Studies". The study of rhythmic isochrony was
based on works of P. Roach, "On the distinction between stress-timed
and syllable-timed languages", Cauldwell R., "The functional
irrhythmicality of spontaneous speech: A discourse view of speech
rhythms", Pamies Bertran, "Prosodic Typology: On the Dichotomy
between Stress-timed and Syllable-timed languages", Hirst D.,
Chafcouloff M., "Rhythm in English: Isochronism, Pitch and Perceived
Stress", Bouzon C., Hirst D., "Isochrony and Prosodic Structure in
British English", F. Ramus, M. Nespor and J. Mehler, "Correlates of
linguistic rhythm in the speech signal", Grabe, L. Low, "Durational
Variability in Speech and the Rhythm Class Hypothesis", Cummins, F.
and Port, R. F., "Rhythmic constraints on stress-timing in English", О.
Ф. Кривнова, «Ритмизация и интонационное членение текста в
«процессе речи-мысли», Шунтова Р. А. «Структура и функции
ритма в формировании просодии фразы».

Once again, if you could point me in the direction of any works
involving the above topics, I would greatly appreciate it.

Kind Regards,
L. Vanyan

Linguistic Field(s): Discourse Analysis
                            Phonetics
                            Phonology
                            Typology

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