Cross-language Lexical-tone Identification

Jennifer Alexander, Yue Wang

We examine how native lexical-tone experience influences identification of novel tone. Cantonese, Thai, Mandarin, and Yoruba listeners identified CV syllables bearing the six phonemic Cantonese tones. Overall tone accuracy scores and tone-error patterns were assessed. Consistent with previous reports, native listeners’ perception reflected effects of ongoing tonal mergers and acoustic similarities incurred by a crowded lower tone space [27]. Non-native listeners’ perception appeared to be influenced by L1 auditory experience, as they attended to acoustic and phonetic cues relevant to the phonological and phonetic properties of L1 tone categories. [Support: NSF grant 0965227 to J.A.A.]

DOI: 10.21437/TAL.2016-6

Cite as

Alexander, J., Wang, Y. (2016) Cross-language Lexical-tone Identification. Proc. Tonal Aspects of Languages 2016, 28-32.

author={Jennifer Alexander and Yue Wang},
title={Cross-language Lexical-tone Identification},
booktitle={Tonal Aspects of Languages 2016},