Speech Prosody 2008

Campinas, Brazil
May 6-9, 2008

The Role of Vowel Quality in Cuing Stress and Accent in Tunisian Arabic, Native English, and L2 English

Nadia Bouchhioua

L’Institut Supérieur des Langues de Tunis, Université de 7 Novembre à Carthage, Tunisia

This study is an attempt to investigate the role of vowel quality in signaling stress and accent in Southern British English (SBE), Tunisian Arabic (TA), and English as produced by Tunisian speakers (L2 English). Results show that while both formant values are affected by lexical stress in SBE, only gradient F1 lowering can be used to predict lexical stress in TA. L2 speakers seem to have transferred this latter fact from their mother tongue as in their productions of English vowels, only F1 was affected by stress. Vowel reduction due to stress in TA and SBE was dissimilar, which affected L2 speakers productions. Vowel quality had no significant role in cuing accent in any of the languages explored.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Bouchhioua, Nadia (2008): "The role of vowel quality in cuing stress and accent in tunisian Arabic, native English, and L2 English", In SP-2008, 539-542.