Speech Prosody 2006

Dresden, Germany
May 2-5, 2006

The Intonation of Polar Questions in two Central Varieties of Italian

Rosa Giordano

University of Naples Federico II, Italy - University of Salerno, Italy

The intonation of Italian can vary according to pragmatic and sociolinguistic factors. This paper presents an analysis of the localised intonational events conveying the pragmatic meaning of interrogation in two regional varieties of Italian (Rome and Perugia).

Data show the type and the distribution of the accents and the boundary occurring in interrogative tone groups selected from map-task dialogues. Results imply consideration about systemic, phonotactic and realisational aspects of the intonational system(s) of Italian, mainly regarding the marked units, their distribution and the differences related to diatopic variation. They also seem to confirm the existence of different patterns related to different kinds of questions (information-seeking vs. confirmation-seeking questions), which has been shown for other varieties of Italian.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Giordano, Rosa (2006): "The intonation of polar questions in two central varieties of Italian", In SP-2006, paper 155.