This talk presents results of a cross-language study of linguopalatal contact differences between the consonants /t/ and /n/ using electropalatography (EPG). The consonants were produced in a variety of phonetic contexts by 28 individuals, native speakers of six languages (English, French, Japanese, Korean, Serbian, and Spanish). An analysis revealed significantly weaker contact for the nasal than the stop with differences varying in magnitude across languages and positions. For some of the languages (English and Spanish), no differences were observed in medial contexts, where the stop was subject to intervocalic lenition. Overall, the results indicate that the seemingly similar lingual gestures involved in the production of nasals and stops differ in their realizations. These differences are argued to reflect the distinct aerodynamic and physiological requirements involved in the production of consonants of different manners. The manner-specific constraints, in turn, appear to interact with with language-specific allophonic processes and general prosodic effects.
Antje Mefferd (Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences, Vanderbilt University Medical Center)
Jonah Katz (West Virginia University)
Michele Gubian (IPS, LMU Munich)
Nancy C. Kula (University of Essex)