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the dirt on Korean "glottalized/tensified" stops

From:Yoon Ha Lee <yl112@...>
Date:Thursday, February 1, 2001, 20:10 least according to Prof. Yiya Chen, who's teaching the intro
phonetics/phonology course I'm taking, and who was kind enough to field a
random after-class question.

She was familiar with the triple series of stops in Korean, and told me:
1.  Nothing exotic about the aspirated stops (transliterated p', t',
etc.) or the nonaspirated stops (transliterated p or b, t or d, etc.).

2.  The tensified stops (Korean "ddwaen-bareum") are definitely not
ejectives (so I was right about that at least).

3.  She said "tensified" is probably the best? most standard? terminology
for the darn things.

4.  To her knowledge linguists don't know what's going on with these
sounds.  (Which makes me wonder where the guy on that Korean alphabet
website got the "glottalized" description.  Everywhere else I've seen
them described, I've seen them referred to as "tensified."  Or maybe
we're just all confused.)  Though you would think there would exist a
Korean-speaking phonetician *somewhere* in the world...oh well.

5.  To her knowledge Korean is, after all, the only language discovered
with these sounds.

I now feel really stupid.  How the !@#$ do I try to explain these things
if even the linguists don't have a description?  Heck, how do I prove
they exist?  :-p