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Positional Velar Fronting: An updated articulatory analysis. Tara McAllister Montclair State University, NJ April 10th, 2010. Acknowledgements . Adam Albright Edward Flemming Donca Steriade Yvan Rose Katherine Demuth Stefanie Shattuck-Hufnagel Magdi Sobeih Haiyan Su B and family.

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positional velar fronting an updated articulatory analysis

Positional Velar Fronting:An updated articulatory analysis

Tara McAllister

Montclair State University, NJ

April 10th, 2010

acknowledgements
Acknowledgements
  • Adam Albright
  • Edward Flemming
  • Donca Steriade
  • Yvan Rose
  • Katherine Demuth
  • Stefanie Shattuck-Hufnagel
  • Magdi Sobeih
  • Haiyan Su
  • B and family

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

positional velar fronting
Positional velar fronting
  • Velar fronting is frequently observed to apply in word-initial/pretonic but not word-final/posttonic contexts (Ingram, 1974; Chiat, 1983; Stoel-Gammon, 1996; Bills & Golston, 2002; Morisette, Dinnsen, & Gierut, 2003; Inkelas & Rose, 2003, 2008).
  • Examples of positional velar fronting (PVF):

Prosodically strong contexts

Prosodically weak contexts

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

neutralization in strong position
Neutralization in strong position
  • Puzzling pattern in child phonology: Phonemic contrast can emerge in weak/final before strong/initial position (Buckley, 2003; Inkelas & Rose, 2003, 2008; Dinnsen & Farris-Trimble, 2008).
  • Reverses a strong generalization across adult phonologies: Phonemes with limited distribution occur in strong position only.
    • Has roots in perceptual asymmetry favoring initial/prevocalic over final/postvocalic contexts (Fujimura, Macchi, & Streeter, 1978).
  • Continuity problem: If we write formal constraints flexible enough to accommodate child patterns, we predict patterns that are unattested in adult phonological typology.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

neutralization in strong position1
Neutralization in strong position
  • Possible solution if we adopt a phonetically-based version of phonology(Hayes, Kirchner & Steriade, 2004):
  • We know that children and adults face significantly different phonetic pressures.
    • Perceptual sensitivity (Elliott & Hammer, 1988)
    • Articulatory anatomy (Crelin, 1987)
    • Speech-motor control abilities (Kent, 1992)
  • If children and adults are subject to different low-level phonetic pressures, their phonologies should look different as well.
  • Child-specific constraints become inactive as child-specific phonetic pressures are eliminated in normal maturation.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

articulatory account of velar fronting inkelas rose 2003 2008
Articulatory account of velar fronting:Inkelas & Rose (2003, 2008)
  • In adult speech, consonants in strong position are produced with larger, stronger gestures than in weak contexts (Fougeron & Keating, 1996).
  • Child perceives prosodically enhanced gesture in adult speech and tries to replicate it.
  • Constraints on child speech: Larger, more anteriorly placed tongue (Crelin, 1987); decreased motor control (Kent, 1992).
  • The child’s attempted velar closure extends into the alveolar region, creating a coronal release.
  • Phonetically-motivated process is then phonologized.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

articulatory account of velar fronting
Articulatory account of velar fronting
  • I take up Inkelas & Rose’s insight that velar fronting is driven by child-specific articulatory phonetic factors.
  • Two new views:
  • New case study data show that fronting can be conditioned by finer-grained differences than the strong-weak dichotomy.
  • Expanded role for child-specific limitations on speech-motor control is proposed.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

case study
Case study
  • Subject B, 4 years, male, monolingual American English learner.
  • Receiving therapy for severe speech sound disorder.
  • Followed longitudinally in biweekly sessions from 3;9 to 4;5.
  • Patterns of neutralization in strong position: positional velar fronting, positional fricative gliding.
  • All words containing a target velar were isolated from the transcript of B’s speech therapy sessions.
    • Total N = 2,408

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

data coding
Data coding
  • Observed output categories:
  • *Segmented production was specifically linked to velar place; never observed for coronal place.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

analysis
Analysis
  • All targets were coded for five factors:
    • Prosodic context (strong vs weak);
    • Voicing (voiced versus voiceless target);
    • Vowel context (back vs nonback);
    • Harmony context (other velar present vs absent);
    • Time of elicitation (four estimated developmental stages).
  • Data were fitted to a five-predictor logistic model with faithful velar place as the dependent variable.
  • Tested partial significance of predictors with χ-square statistic.
  • All main terms were significant predictors of variance (p < .001).

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

results prosodic context
Results: Prosodic context
  • Main effect of prosodic context: Weak > strong (Fisher’s Exact p < .000).
  • Consistent with previous literature.

*

Bars show standard error.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

results voicing
Results: Voicing
  • Main effect of voicing:

Voiced target > Voiceless target (Fisher’s Exact p < .000).

  • New finding.
  • From 4;2 on, fully faithful voiced targets contrasted systematically with segmented voiceless targets.

*

Bars show standard error.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

unifying the conditioning factors
Unifying the conditioning factors
  • One old question and two new ones:
    • Why are velars more accurate in weak than strong position?
    • Why are voiced velars more accurate than voiceless velars?
    • Why does “segmented production” precede fully faithful velar production?

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

unifying the conditioning factors1
Unifying the conditioning factors
  • All of the contexts associated with greater accuracy have relatively lower level of gestural force.
  • Consonant gestures are more forceful in prosodically strong position (Browman & Goldstein, 1995; Fougeron & Keating, 1996).
  • Gestural force is greater in voiceless than voiced plosives (Wakumoto et al., 1998; Mooshammer et al., 2007).
    • Voiceless stops have greater airflow (McGlone and Shipp, 1972); more forceful gesture is needed to offset intraoral pressure/avoid spirantization
  • “Segmented” production: Valving at glottis limits intraoral pressure (Clements & Osu, 2002), allows lighter articulatory contact.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

unifying the conditioning factors2
Unifying the conditioning factors
  • How can we modify phonetically-influenced grammar to capture general conditioning by gestural strength?
  • Violable phonological constraint Move-As-Unit: “Achieve linguopalatal contact by moving the tongue-jaw complex.”
  • Three pieces to the proposal:
    • Why child speakers favor jaw-controlled movements.
    • How jaw-controlled movement drives fronting.
    • Why Move-As-Unit is sensitive to gradient differences in articulatory force.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

speech motor limitations
Speech-motor limitations
  • Child lacks skill to plan movements with a large number of degrees of freedom (Fletcher, 1992).
  • Tongue is motorically complex; imposes simultaneous "skeletal, movement, and shaping requirements" (Kent, 1992).
  • Jaw is motorically simple (bilaterally hinged joint) .
  • In early stages of development, tongue may ride passively on active jaw (MacNeilage & Davis, 1990).

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

undifferentiated gestures
Undifferentiated gestures
  • Jaw-controlled movement is linked to an undifferentiated pattern of linguopalatal contact.
  • Undifferentiated gestures: Midsagittal linguopalatal contact spanning alveolar through velar regions (Gibbon, 1999).
    • Reflects inability to control discrete functional regions of the tongue.
  • Proposal: Fronted velars are not true coronals but undifferentiated lingual gestures.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

role of gestural force
Role of gestural force
  • Recall tongue’s "skeletal, movement, and shaping requirements"
  • When low and close to the mandible, some of the tongue’s shaping needs are filled by the lower teeth.
  • For a higher target, shaping requirements must increasingly be filled by lingual musculature.
    • Multiplies complexity of motor task.
    • Increases predisposition to use a jaw-controlled gesture.
  • Magnitude of Move-As-Unit violation is proportional to height of articulatory target.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

conclusions
Conclusions
  • Move-As-Unit makes it possible to model B’s output across prosodic and voicing contrasts in all documented stages of development.
  • When child-specific articulatory limitations cease to apply, the constraint will be eliminated from the grammar.
  • Goals:
    • Model other problematic child processes (especially neutralization in strong position) using phonetically-sensitive constraint Move-As-Unit.
    • Look for direct evidence of undifferentiated gestures in velar fronting.

International Child Phonology Conference 2010

references
References

Bills, S., & Golston, C. (2002). Prosodic and linear licensing in English acquisition. In Carmichael, L., Huang, C.-H., & Samiian, V. (eds.), Proceedings of the Western Conference on Linguistics (2001), 13–26. Fresno: California State University, Fresno.

Browman, C. P. & Goldstein, L. (1995) Gestural syllable position effects in American English. In F. Bell-Berti & L. J. Raphael (Eds.), Producing Speech: Contemporary Issues (for Kathering Safford Harris) (pp. 19-33). Woodbury, NY: AIP Press.

Buckley, E. L. (2003). Children’s unnatural phonology. Berkeley Linguistics Society 29.523–34.

Chiat, S. (1983) Why Mikey's right and My key's wrong: the significance of stress and word boundaries in a child's output system. Cognition, 14, 275-300.

Clements, G. N., & Osu, S. (2002). Explosives, implosives, and nonexplosives: the linguistic function of air pressure differences in stops. In C. Gussenhoven & N. Warner (Eds.), Laboratory Phonology 7 (pp. 299-350). Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.

Crelin, E. S. (1987). The human vocal tract: Anatomy, function, development, and evolution. New York: Vantage Press.

Dinnsen, D. A., & Farris-Trimble, A. W. (2008). The prominence paradox. In Dinnsen, D. A., & Gierut, J. A. Optimality Theory, Phonological Acquisition and Disorders, pp. 277-308. London, Equinox Publishing Ltd.

Fletcher, S. G. (1992). Articulation: A physiological approach. San Diego, CA: Singular.

Fougeron, C., & Keating, P. (1996). Articulatory strengthening in prosodic domain-initial position. UCLA Working Papers in Phonetics, 92, 61-87.

Fujimura, O., Macchi, M. J., & Streeter, L. (1978). Perception of stop consonants with conflicting transitional cues: A cross-linguistic study. Language and Speech, 21, 337-346

Elliott, L. L., & Hammer, M. A. (1988). Longitudinal changes in auditory discrimination in normal children and children with language-learning problems. Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders, 53, 467-474.

Gibbon, F. (1999). Undifferentiated Lingual Gestures in Children with Articulation/Phonological Disorders. Journalof Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 42, 382–397.

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references1
References

Hayes, B., Kirchner R., & Steriade, D. (Eds). (2004). Phonetically-Based Phonology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Inkelas, S., & Rose, Y. (2003) Velar Fronting Revisited. In B. Beachley, A. Brown, & F. Conlin (Eds.), Proceedings of the 26th Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development (pp. 334-345). Somerville, MA: Cascadilla Press.

Inkelas, S., & Rose, Y. (2008). Positional Neutralization: A Case Study from Child Language. Language, 83, 707-736.

Ingram, D. (l974). Fronting in child phonology. Journal of Child Language, 1, 233-241.

Kent, R. D. (1992). The biology of phonological maturation. In Ferguson, C. A., Menn, L., & Stoel-Gammon, C. (eds.), Phonological Development: Models, Research, Implications, 65-90. Timonium, MD: York Press.

MacNeilage, P. F., & Davis, B. L. (1990). Acquisition of speech production: Frames, then content. In M. Jeannerod (Ed.), Attention and performance: Vol. 13, Motor representation and control (pp. 453-475). Hillsdale, N.J.: Erlbaum.

McGlone, R. E., & Shipp, T. (1972). Comparison of subglottal air pressures associated with /p/ and /b/. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 51, 664.

Morisette, M. L., Dinnsen, D. A., & Gierut, J. A. (2003). Markedness and Context Effects in the Acquisition of Place Features. Canadian Journal of Linguistics, 48, 329-355.

Mooshammer, C., Hoole, P. & Geumann, A. (2007). Jaw and order. Language & Speech, 50, 145-176.

Stoel-Gammon, C. (1996). On the acquisition of velars in English. Proceedings of the UBC International Conference on Phonological Acquisition, 201–214. Somerville,MA: Cascadilla Press.

Wakumoto, M., Masaki, S., Honda, K. & Ohue, T. (1998). A pressure sensitive palatography: application of new pressure sensitive sheet for measuring tongue-palatal contact pressure. In Proceedings of the 5rd International Conference on Spoken Language Processing (pp. 3151-3154). Sydney.

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