Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Ventricular phonation PLUS strident vowels

From:Mark Jones <markjjones@...>
Date:Wednesday, March 30, 2005, 7:28
To answer Ray's question about ventricular folds being used as independent
articulators, I don't think they can be.

The ventricular folds themselves contain very few muscle fibres, and
adduction (closure) requires a fairly extensive constriction gesture
involving the true vocal folds (to which the ventricular folds are connected
via the arytenoids and at the thyroid cartilage) and larynx raising, and
possibly also supralaryngeal structures like the aryepiglottal folds
(connecting arytenoids and epiglottis) - it's a real maze back there!

Hope that helps a little.

There is a set of vowels in at least one Khoisan language called "strident
vowels" which seem to involve the epiglottis (in connection with other
vibrating bits of the larynx but NOT the true vocal folds) as a sound
source. The effect is something like breathy voice with pharyngealisation.
These sounds are rarer than clicks, but don't enjoy the same high profile as
being interesting and exotic. In any case, the strident vowels probably are
the most extreme examples of non-modal phonation type you can get (see
Ladefoged and Maddieson, 1996, Sounds of the World's Languages: 310-313,


Mark J. Jones
Department of Linguistics
University of Cambridge