Prosodic Units and Intonational Grammar in French : towards a new Approach

Elisabeth Delais-Roussarie, Brechtje Post, Hiyon Yoo


In most studies on French prosody, two or three distinct levels of constituency above the word are assumed: the accentual phrase, the intermediate phrase and the intonational phrase. While there is considerable agreement on the definition of the accentual phrase, there is much controversy over the two other levels. In this paper, we will argue for a new definition of the intermediate phrase. Our proposal will depart from previous work in two ways. First, we will clarify the extension and status of the intermediate phrase (or phonological phrase) in such a way as to consider it essentially as a metrically-driven prosodic unit. Second, a distinction will be made between this metrically-driven phrase and two types of intonational phrases on the basis of the intonational contours occurring at their right edge. This proposal, which accounts for phrasing and intonation contour choice at the underlying phonological level, is based on the analysis of utterances extracted from experimental studies and corpora, focussed on (a) the inventory and possible realisations of the contours at the right edge of these phrases, and (b) their relation with the morpho-syntactic and semantic structures.


 DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2020-26

Cite as: Delais-Roussarie, E., Post, B., Yoo, H. (2020) Prosodic Units and Intonational Grammar in French : towards a new Approach. Proc. 10th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2020, 126-130, DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2020-26.


@inproceedings{Delais-Roussarie2020,
  author={Elisabeth Delais-Roussarie and Brechtje Post and Hiyon Yoo},
  title={{Prosodic Units and Intonational Grammar in French : towards a new Approach}},
  year=2020,
  booktitle={Proc. 10th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2020},
  pages={126--130},
  doi={10.21437/SpeechProsody.2020-26},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/SpeechProsody.2020-26}
}