- Volume 8 Issue 1
The Korean high back vowels /o/ and /u/ have been reported to be in a state of near-merger especially among young female speakers. Along with cross-generational changes, the vowel position within a word has been reported to render different phonetic realization. The current study examines native English speakers' ability to attend to the phonetic cues that distinguish the two merging vowels and the positional effects (word-initial vs. word-final) on the identification accuracy. 28 two-syllable words containing /o/ or /u/ in either initial or final position were produced by native female Korean speakers. The CV part of each target word were excised and presented to six native English speakers. The results showed that although the identification accuracy was the lowest for /o/ in word- final position (41%), it increased up to 80% in word-initial position. The acoustic analyses of the target vowels showed that /o/ and /u/ were differentiated on the height dimension only in word-initial position, suggesting that English speakers may have perceived the distinctive F1 difference retained in the prominent position.
non-native speech perception;Korean vowel merger;positional effects;L2 vowel identification
- Assmann, P. & Katz, W. (2000). Time-varying spectral change in the vowels of children and adults. Journal of Acoustical Society of America,108, 1856-1866. https://doi.org/10.1121/1.1289363
- Beddor, P. (2015). The Relation between Language Users' Perception and Production Repertoires. Proceedings of the 18th ICPhS.
- Best, C. T. (1995). A direct realist view of cross-language speech perception. In W. Strange (Ed.), Speech Perception and Linguistic Experience: Theoretical and Methodological Issues (pp. 171-204). Timonium, MD: York Press.
- Best, C. T. & Tyler, M. (2007). Nonnative and second language speech perception: Commonalities and complementaries. In O.-S. Bohn & M. J. Munro (Eds.), Language Experience in Second Language Speech Learning: In Honor of James Emil Flege (pp. 13-34). Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company.
- Chae, S. (1999). The core-periphery structure in the Korean lexicon reflected in a phonological variation and change. Studies in Phonetics, Phonology and Morphology, 5, 217-236.
- Chung, H., Gong, E., & Weismer, G. (2010). Vowel formant trajectory patterns for shared vowels of American English and Korean, Phonetics and Speech Sciences, 2, 67-74.
- Eckert, P. (1989). The whole woman: Sex and gender differences in variation. Language Variation and Change, 1, 245-268. https://doi.org/10.1017/S095439450000017X
- Flege, J. (1995). Second language speech learning theory, findings, and problems. In W. Strange (Ed.), Speech Perception and Linguistic Experience: Issues in Cross-Language Research (pp. 233-277). Timonium, MD: York Press.
- Guion, S. G. & Pederson, E. (2007). Investigating the role of attention in phonetic learning. In O.-S. Bohn & M. J. Munro (Eds.), Language Experience in Second Language Speech Learning: In Honor of James Emil Flege (pp. 57-78). Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company.
- Han, J. & Kang, H. (2013). Cross-generational Change of /o/ and /u/ in Seoul Korean I. Phonetics and Speech Sciences, 5, 25-31.
- Iverson, P. & Kuhl, P. K. (1995). Mapping the perceptual magnet effect for speech using signal detection theory and multidimensional scaling. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 97, 553-562. https://doi.org/10.1121/1.412280
- Jang, H. & Shin, J. (2006). An acoustic study on the generational difference of the monophthongs in the Daegu Dialect. Malsori, 57, 15-30. (장혜진.신지영 (2006). 대구 방언 단모음의 세대 간 차이에 대한 음향 음성학적 연구. 말소리, 57, 15-30.)
- Johnson, K. & Martin, J. (2001). Acoustic vowel reduction in Greek: Effects of distinctive length and position in the word. Phonetica, 58, 81-102. https://doi.org/10.1159/000028489
- Jung, M. (2002). Sound change of language used in broadcasting, Kwukehak, 39, 221-249. (정명숙 (2002). 방송 언어에 나타난 말소리의 사적 변천, 국어학, 39, 221-249.)
- Kang, Y. (2015). A corpus-based study of positional variation in Seoul Korean Vowels. In M. Kenstowicz, T. Levin, & R. Masuda (Eds.), Japanese/Korean Linguistics, 23. CSLI Publications.
- Kewley-Port, D. & Watson, C. S. (1994). Formant-frequency discrimination for isolated English vowels, Journal of Acoustical Society of America, 95, 485-496. https://doi.org/10.1121/1.410024
- Kwon, H. (2015). Cue primacy and spontaneous imitation: is imitation phonetic or phonological? Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
- Labov, W. (2001). Principles of Linguistic Change, Vol. 2: Social Factors. Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishers Inc.
- Nearey, T. M. & Assmann, P. F. (1986). Modeling the role of inherent spectral change in vowel identification. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 80, 1297-1308. https://doi.org/10.1121/1.394433
- Nishi, K., Strange, W., Akahane-Yamada, R., Kubo, R., & Trent-Brown, S. A. (2008). Acoustic and perceptual similarity of Japanese and American English vowels. Journal of Acoustical Society of America, 124, 576-588. https://doi.org/10.1121/1.2931949
- Nittrouer, S. (1992). Age-related differences in perceptual effects of formant transitions within syllables and across syllable boundaries. Journal of Phonetics, 20, 351-382.
- Ryalls, J. H., & Lieberman, P. (1982). Fundamental frequency and vowel perception. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 72, 1631-1634. https://doi.org/10.1121/1.388499
- Seong, C. (2005). A formant analysis of the Korean monophthongs of the college students speaking Chungnam dialect. Eoneohag, 43, 189-213. (성철재 (2005). 충남지역 대학생들의 한국어 단모음 포먼트 분석. 언어학, 43, 189-213.)
- Sebastian-Galles, N. & Baus, C. (2005). On the relationship between perception and production in L2 categories. In A. Cutler (Ed.), Twenty-First Century Psycholinguistics: Four Cornerstones (pp. 279-292). New York: Erlbaum.
- Strange, W. (1989). Dynamic specification of coarticulated vowels spoken in sentence context. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 85, 2135-2153. https://doi.org/10.1121/1.397863
- Yang, B. (1996). A comparative study of American English and Korean vowels produced by male and female speakers. Journal of Phonetics, 24, 245-261. https://doi.org/10.1006/jpho.1996.0013
- Yang, B. (1996). Perceptual contrast in the Korean and English vowel system normalized. ICSLP-1996, 114-117.
- Yang, B. (2010). Formant trajectories of English high tense and lax vowel produced by Korean and American speakers, Korean Journal of Linguistics, 35, 407-421. https://doi.org/10.18855/lisoko.2010.35.2.005
- Yoon, T., Kang, Y., Han, S., Maeng, H., Lee, J., & Kim, K. (2015). A corpus-based approach to dialectal variation in Korean vowels. Proceedings of the 18th ICPhS.