Laryngeal and supralaryngeal articulators coordinately work to produce speech sounds. In order to study differences in supralaryngeal manifestations of voiced and voiceless consonants, we compared the tongue movement during a minimal pair /agise/ and /akise/ using the fast scanning techniques of MRI movies. The result showed that the tongue displacement starts earlier in /k/ than in /g/ for many of the speakers of Tokyo Japanese. This agrees with our previous findings using other dialect speakers. These results suggest that many Japanese actively differentiate supralaryngeal articulation according to the voicing of the consonants, raising the tongue earlier in voiceless ones. This movement is presumably to ensure the voicelessness of the consonant. The present study also supplies evidence for the usefulness of a constructive approach for physical modeling.
Bibliographic reference. Fujimoto, Masako / Kitamura, Tatsuya / Hatano, Hiroaki / Fujimoto, Ichiro (2013): "Timing differences in articulation between voiced and voiceless stop consonants: an analysis of cine-MRI data", In INTERSPEECH-2013, 955-958.