USAGE: Voiced/voiceless stops in English, was: Re: Pronouncing Tokana...
|From:||Vasiliy Chernov <bc_@...>|
|Date:||Tuesday, February 1, 2000, 15:01|
How does all this interact with syllabification?
E. g., what happens in examples like:
a tall man
- in Americal English? Does British English differ?
On Fri, 28 Jan 2000 11:42:59 -0600, Matt Pearson
>>At 09:35 28/01/00 -0600, you wrote:
>>>English may distinguish voiced from voiceless stops, but I think that
>>>(in word-initial position, anyway) the primary phonetic cue for the
>>>contrast is aspiration: If the initial stop is aspirated, it gets 'read'
>>>as voiceless, and if it's unaspirated, it gets 'read' as voiced,regardless
>>>of what the actual voicing of the sound may be. In trying to teach
>>>phonetics to college students, I've noticed that they often have
>>>tremendous difficulty hearing whether a stop is voiced or voiceless:
>>>If I ask them, "Is /z/ voiced or voiceless?", they can answer right
>>>away. But if I ask them "Is /b/ voiced or voiceless?", they have no
>>>idea, and have to look it up on the chart. On the other hand, they
>>>generally have no difficulty distinguishing aspirated from
>>>unaspirated stops, once they understand what to listen for.
>> I find it strange, because English has also voiced stops
>>voiceless stops, at least inside words, doesn't it?
>Oh, yes, of course. The point that I was making is that, when it comes
>to distinguishing, say, /b/ from /p/, English speakers don't seem to be
>all that sensitive to the voicing feature per se - or at least, it's very
>hard to make them *consciously* sensitive to it. I have my students
>do the test where they hold their fingers against their larynx and feel
>for vibrations, and they typically report no difference between /b/ and