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Towards an articulatory phonology

  • Catherine P. Browman (a1) and Louis M. Goldstein (a1)

Abstract

We propose an approach to phonological representation based on describing an utterance as an organised pattern of overlapping articulatory gestures. Because movement is inherent in our definition of gestures, these gestural ‘constellations’ can account for both spatial and temporal properties of speech in a relatively simple way. At the same time, taken as phonological representations, such gestural analyses offer many of the same advantages provided by recent nonlinear phonological theories, and we give examples of how gestural analyses simplify the description of such ‘complex segments’ as /s/–stop clusters and prenasalised stops. Thus, gestural structures can be seen as providing a principled link between phonological and physical description.

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This paper has benefited greatly from the comments and criticisms of several dozen colleagues, primarily from Haskins, Yale and UCLA. We only wish we could thank each of them individually here. Any weaknesses remaining in the paper are due solely to our own intransigence in the face of their patient and generous critiques. (This work was supported in part by NIH grants HD-01994, NS-13870 and NS-13617 to Haskins Laboratories.)

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Towards an articulatory phonology

  • Catherine P. Browman (a1) and Louis M. Goldstein (a1)

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