Prosodic organization and focus realization in taiwan mandarin

Yu Yin Hsu, James S. German

Research output: Unpublished conference presentation (presented paper, abstract, poster)Conference presentation (not published in journal/proceeding/book)Academic researchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Cross-linguistically, the way that focus ismarked through prosody can depend on avariety of factors, including local constraints onprosodic organization or the position of a wordwithin the larger focus constituent. Here wereport on a production study that explores thepossible influence of prosodic organization andposition on focus realization in TaiwanMandarin. The materials consisted of sentencesin which the syntactic subject consisted of amonosyllabic numeral, classifier, and noun. Thecontext was manipulated to elicit narrowinformation focus (i.e., using wh-questions) oneither the numeral, the noun, or the entire NP.The resulting target syllables were thenanalyzed in terms of their F0 characteristics,duration, and amplitude. The results revealedclear asymmetries in how the numeral and nounwere realized in their corresponding singleword narrow focus condition versus in the NPfocus condition, though confiding to theintrinsic tone-patterns (e.g., Tone 1 versus Tone3 words showed different contours). Moreover,the classifier did not always conform to itsexpected status when external to the focusconstituent. These results thus show that focuseffects in Taiwan Mandarin cannot beexplained in terms of single parameter acousticenhancement on individual focused words, andthey suggest that focus marking in that varietyis conditioned by independent constraints onlocal prosodic structure.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Event32nd Pacific Asia Conference on Language, Information and Computation, PACLIC 2018 - Hong Kong, Hong Kong
Duration: 1 Dec 20183 Dec 2018


Conference32nd Pacific Asia Conference on Language, Information and Computation, PACLIC 2018
Country/TerritoryHong Kong
CityHong Kong

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)


Dive into the research topics of 'Prosodic organization and focus realization in taiwan mandarin'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this