Categorical perception of cantonese tones in context: A cross-linguistic study

Hongying Zheng, Peter W M Tsang, William Shi Yuan Wang

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingConference article published in proceeding or bookAcademic researchpeer-review

Abstract

When human beings perceive speech sounds, they categorize the sounds into one or another phonemic category. The mechanism which is responsible for this phenomenon remains unknown. Is it influenced by listeners' long term language experience or does it reflect some general psychoacoustic aspects of processing? Previous study shows Cantonese level tones are perceived continuously in citation forms [1]. However, they are perceived categorically in the presence of context [6]. The work in [6] does not provide enough evidence to support the hypothesis of long term language influence. In this study, we compare Mandarin and Cantonese speaker's perception on Cantonese level tones in context, and Cantonese speaker's perception on speech and nonspeech (analogous complex harmonics) in the same context as well. Results show evidence of categorical perception on speech stimuli for Cantonese speakers only. These findings support the hypothesis of long term language influence.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Speech Communication Association - 8th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association, Interspeech 2007
Pages1313-1316
Number of pages4
Volume2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2007
Externally publishedYes
Event8th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association, Interspeech 2007 - Antwerp, Belgium
Duration: 27 Aug 200731 Aug 2007

Conference

Conference8th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association, Interspeech 2007
CountryBelgium
CityAntwerp
Period27/08/0731/08/07

Keywords

  • Categorical perception
  • Cross-linguistic
  • Nonspeech
  • Speech perception
  • Tone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Software
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Communication

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