Speech Prosody 2002
Uptalk or rising intonation is a distinctive feature of Australian English. The distribution and discourse functions of simple and complex rising tunes were examined in a corpus of Australian English map task dialogues. Dialogue acts (classified using DAMSL) corresponding to information requests were consistently realized as high-onset high rises whereas low-onset high rises corresponded to a wider range of forward-looking communicative functions, such as statements and action directives, but were rarely associated with information requests. Two kinds of fall-rise tunes were also observed: low-range and high-range fall-rise. The high-range fallrises shared similar dialogue functions with statement high rises and were almost never associated with yes/no questions. Low-range fall-rises were associated with the same kinds of functions as simple low rises, such as acknowledgements and answers, i.e. backward-looking dialogue acts. The Australian English statement high rise (usually realized as a L* H-H% tune) is clearly not the same tune as a yes-no question rise in this variety, and is used, along with the high-range fall-rise, as a co-operative device in the map task.
Bibliographic reference. Fletcher, Janet / Wales, Roger / Stirling, Lesley / Mushin, Ilana (2002): "A dialogue act analysis of rises in australian English map task dialogues", In SP-2002, 299-302.