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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more



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Academic Paper


Title: An acoustic and perceptual study of Connemara Irish palatalization
Author: Maire Ni Chiosain
Email: click here to access email
Institution: University College Dublin
Author: Jaye Padgett
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://people.ucsc.edu/~padgett/
Institution: University of California
Linguistic Field: Phonetics; Phonology; Psycholinguistics
Subject Language: Russian
Irish
Abstract: Palatalization contrasts are subject to certain asymmetries across languages (Takatori 1997, Kochetov 2002). For example, they are preferred at the beginning of words or syllables rather than at the end, and they are preferred in coronals rather than labials. Kochetov (2002, 2004) argues that these asymmetries are perceptually motivated, and he provides supporting evidence from Russian. We report on results of an acoustic and perceptual study of palatalization in Connemara Irish. Our acoustic analysis documents a range of properties distinguishing palatalized from non-palatalized consonants in Irish, though our acoustic data come from only one speaker. Based on a speeded AX discrimination task, our perceptual results in some ways parallel Kochetov's for Russian (listeners show degraded performance for the coda contrast compared to the onset contrast), and in some ways do not (they do not perform better on coronals than on labials).

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Journal of the International Phonetic Association Vol. 42, Issue 2, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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