14thAnnual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Lyon, France
August 25-29, 2013

The Interplay of Linguistic Structure and Breathing in German Spontaneous Speech

Amélie Rochet-Capellan (1), Susanne Fuchs (2)

(1) GIPSA, France
(2) ZAS Berlin, Germany

This paper investigates the relation between the linguistic structure of the breath group and breathing kinematics in spontaneous speech. 26 female speakers of German were recorded by means of an Inductance Plethysmograph. The breath group was defined as the interval of speech produced on a single exhalation. For each group several linguistic parameters (number and type of clauses, number of syllables, hesitations) were measured and the associated inhalation was characterized. The average duration of the breath group was .3.5 s. Most of the breath groups consisted of 1.3 clauses; .53% started with a matrix clause; .24% with an embedded clause and .23% with an incomplete clause (continuation, repetition, hesitation). The inhalation depth and duration varied as a function of the first clause type and with respect to the breath group length, showing some interplay between speech-planning and breathing control. Vocalized hesitations were speaker-specific and came with deeper inhalation. These results are informative for a better understanding of the interplay of speech-planning and breathing control in spontaneous speech. The findings are also relevant for applications in speech therapies and technologies.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Rochet-Capellan, Amélie / Fuchs, Susanne (2013): "The interplay of linguistic structure and breathing in German spontaneous speech", In INTERSPEECH-2013, 2014-2018.