Northwestern Events Calendar


Linguistics Colloquium Series: Kathryn Franich - Coordination and its Relationship to Acoustic and Articulatory Enhancement

When: Friday, April 12, 2024
3:30 PM - 6:00 PM CT

Where: Chambers Hall, Lower level, 600 Foster St, Evanston, IL 60208 map it

Audience: Faculty/Staff - Student - Public - Post Docs/Docs - Graduate Students

Contact: Talant Abdykairov  

Group: Linguistics Department

Category: Academic


Linguistics Colloquium Series: Kathryn Franich

Affiliation: Harvard University


Stressed syllables in languages which have them tend to show two interesting properties: they show patterns of phonetic ‘enhancement’ at the articulatory and acoustic levels, and they also show coordinative properties. They typically play a key role in coordinating speech with co-speech gesture, in coordination with a musical beat, and in other sensorimotor synchronization tasks such as speech-coordinated beat tapping and metronome timing. While various phonological theories have considered stress from both of these perspectives, there is as yet no clear explanation as to how these properties relate to one another. In this talk, I present work from various experiments to support the idea that aspects of phonetic enhancement are driven by synchronized coordination. First, I demonstrate how certain acoustic correlates common to stressed syllables across languages—including increased duration and raised F1 frequency—are enhanced for speech spoken in synchrony with a metronome across languages with prosodically distinct profiles. Second, I present work on speech articulation and co-speech gesture demonstrating that jaw and tongue movements are more extreme in the vertical direction when a syllable is accompanied by a co-speech gesture. I show that vowel-specific results do not show hallmarks of expanded vowel space/hyperarticulation in gesture-accompanied speech, suggesting that the effect of gesture is not related to a gradient increase in accentedness or prosodic emphasis (de Jong & Edwards 1993). Third, I provide evidence from a conversational corpus of Medʉmba, a tonal Grassfields Bantu language, suggesting that the effects of co-speech gesture on duration are even more widespread. I close by mapping a possible diachronic relationship between synchronous coordination, phrasal accent, and word-level metrical enhancement effects.

Register More Info Add to Calendar

Add Event To My Group:

Please sign-in