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Words Onscreen

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Communication Accommodation Theory

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Most people modify their ways of speaking, writing, texting, and e-mailing, and so on, according to the people with whom they are communicating. This fascinating book asks why we 'accommodate' to others in this way, and explores the various social consequences arising from it.


Summary Details


Query:   Whispering and singing in tone languages
Author:  Susan Fischer
Submitter Email:  click here to access email
Linguistic LingField(s):   Language Documentation
Phonetics
Phonology

Summary:   A FEW WEEKS AGO I POSTED THE FOLLOWING QUERY:

> THIS QUESTION WAS THE RESULT OF A LATE-NIGHT IDLE CONVERSATION, AND,
> FRANKLY, LITTLE OF SCHOLARLY WORTH IS LIKELY TO COME OUT OF IT, BUT
> HERE GOES: IN A TONE LANGUAGE, AND HERE I'M THINKING PARTICULARLY OF
> CHINESE, IS THERE SOME KIND OF COMPENSATORY PROCESS FOR CONVEYING
> TONES WHEN WHISPERING (OR SINGING), SUCH AS SUBSTITUTING STRESS FOR A
> HIGHER TONE, OR DOES CONTEXT ALONE DISAMBIGUATE POTENTIAL HOMONYMS?
> PLEASE RESPOND TO ME PRIVATELY AND I WILL SUMMARIZE FOR THE LIST GIVEN
> SUFFICIENT RESPONSES.

I WOULD LIKE TO THANK THE FOLLOWING PEOPLE FOR THEIR THOUGHTFUL RESPONSES:
SCOTT MCGINNIS
KORMI ANIPA
CATHRYN DONAHUE < DONOHUE@UCLA.EDU>
RALF GROSSERHODE
GERALD B MATHIAS
JONATHAN GLASSOW
GEOFFREY SAMPSON
JERRY PACKARD
CHILIN SHIH
DAN MOONHAWK ALFORD

SEVERAL INTERESTING THREADS EMERGE FROM THE RESPONSES, EXTRACTS
OF WHICH ARE GIVEN BELOW EACH NUMBERED PARAGRAPH; UNLESS
OTHERWISE SPECIFIED, REMARKS ARE ABOUT CHINESE:

1) FOR SOME BUT APPARENTLY NOT ALL TONE LANGUAGES, EVEN IF TONES
ARE NEUTRALIZED VIA WHISPERING, OTHER PHONETIC CORRELATES SUCH
AS AMPLITUDE, LENGTH, AND LARYNGEAL ACTIVITY REMAIN;

LL Issue: 8.567
Date Posted: 22-Apr-1997
Original Query: Read original query