Intonation. Its nature, components.
Rhythm, tempo, pausation, tamber. Functions of intonation. Prosodic units: syllable, rhythmic group, intonation group, the utterance. The structure of the intonation group. Types of head, prehead, tail. Utterance stress.
1.Rhythm and tempo
Rhythm - the regular alternation of stressed and unstressed syllables.
A rhythmic group (a stress-group, a phonetic word) - a group of syllables consisting of one stressed syllable and the preceding and/or following unstressed ones.
The stressed syllable is the prosodic nucleus of the rhythmic group.
The initial unstressed syllables preceding the nucleus - proclitics, those following the nucleus - enclitics.
The semantic viewpoint: the unstressed syllables tend to be drawn towards the stressed syllable of the same word or to the lexical unit according to their semantic connection, concord with other words, e.g.
Negro Harlem / became / the largest / colony / of coloured people.
The enclitic tendency: the unstressed syllables in between the stressed ones tend to join the preceding stressed syllable, e.g.
Negro Harlem / became the / largest / colony of / coloured people.
The enclitic tendency is more typical of the English language. The speech tempo and style often regulate the division into rhythmic groups.
The tempo - the rate of the utterance and pausation. The rate of speech: normal, slow, fast. Changes in the tempo of English speech caused by the regularity of its rhythm are closely connected with changes in the length of English sounds, especially vowels.
To keep a good natural English rhythm it is necessary to pronounce stressed syllables at more or less regular intervals of time and to fit in unstressed syllables between them. In order to achieve this, the length of vowels in syllables is either increased or decreased.
Stressed vowels are shorter if followed by unstressed syllables than if followed by another stressed syllable. Compare the length of /æ/ in the word Ann:
'Ann 'went to the ˎcinema. 'Ann has 'gone to the ˎcinema.
In the first sentence the stressed vowel /æ/ is longer than in the second. Thus, the length of the unstressed syllables depends on their number. When there are many unstressed syllables, they are pronounced quicker and their vowels are shorter than when there are few of them.
The parts of the utterance which are particularly important sound slower.
Pausation and tamber
Any stretch of speech can be split into smaller portions, i.e. phonetic wholes ( a chain of oral speech which is semantically and intonationally complete, may be equal to a phrase or include several phrases), phrases, intonation groups by means of pauses.
Pause - a complete stop of phonation.
Functionally, there may be distinguished the following types of pauses:
2.Intonation, its nature, components
On perception level intonation is a complex, a whole formed by
The term “prosody” can substitute the term “intonation”
On the acoustic level
pitch correlates with the fundamental frequency of the vibration of the vocal cords;
loudness with the amplitude of vibrations;
tempo with the time during which a speech unit lasts.
An intonation pattern (sense-group, breath-group, tone group, intonation group, tone unit, pitch and stress pattern) is the basic unit of intonation which contains one nucleus + optional stressed or unstressed syllables preceding or following it.
A breath-group, is a complete sentence that can conveniently be said with a single breath, or in the case of very long sentences, the longest portions that can conveniently be said with a single breath.
A breath-group usually coincides with a sense-group.
However, two or even more sense-groups or breath-groups may be pronounced together without being actually delimited from each other. Therefore there may be potential and actual sense-groups and potential sense-groups have no formal phonetic indicators of their boundaries (i.e. pauses). An intonation-group, on the other hand, is a unit in the actually realized division of a sentence into sense-groups. In other words, an intonation-group is an actualized sense-group (syntagm).
3. The structure of the intonation group. Types of nuclear tones
One of the syllables has the greater prominence than the others and forms the nucleus, or focal point of an intonation pattern. It is generally the last strongly accented syllable of an intonation pattern and marks a significant change of pitch direction.
Minimally an intonation pattern consists of one syllable, which is its nucleus. Maximally it consists of three other segments: the head, the pre-head and the tail.
A nuclear tone is the change of pitch within the last stressed syllable of the tone-group is called.
Nuclear tones in English according to R.Kingdon are:
1) Low Fall – (ˎNo.); 2) High Fall – (ˋNo.); 3) Low Rise – (ˏNo.); 4) High Rise – (ˊNo.); 5) Fall-Rise – (ˇNo.). He also gives 6) Rise-Fall (ˆNo.), 7) Rise-Fall-Rise (˜No.); 8) level tone (ˉNo.)
The level nuclear tone - when there is clear evidence of an intonation-group boundary, but no nuclear tone movement preceding.
Sweet distinguishes 8 tones:
ˉ level, ́high rising, ِlow rising, ̀high falling, ˛low falling, ˇcompound rising, ˆcompound falling, ˜rising-falling-rising.
Palmer has four basic tones: falling, high rising, falling-rising, low rising.
R.Kingdon: The kinetic tones - delimitative function is performed by a change of pitch direction
The static tone - the level tone - the delimitation of sense-groups or sentences is effected by a change of pitch level: the following sense-group or sentence begins at a different (usually higher) pitch level.
The nuclear tones may be made emphatic:
R.Kingdon: “when it is desired to call special attention to some word in a sentence, making it more prominent even than words which are taking full stress (whether static or kinetic), it may be given a degree of stress beyond the normal. This extra or emphatic stress is usually accompanied by some tonal modification, which will take the form of a bodily raising or lowering of the static tones, and an increase in the pitch range used by the kinetic ones…”.
The meanings of the nuclear tones
4.The structure of the intonation group. Types of the pre-head, the head, the tail
1. The pre-head - unstressed and half stressed syllables preceding the first stressed syllable Types of the pre-head :
L. Armstrong and I. Ward: 1) rising (⋰); 2) mid (⋯); 3) low (…) M.A.Sokolova and other phoneticians: 1) the low pre-head (unstressed or partially stressed syllables are pronounced lower than the first stressed syllable of the head), 2) high pre-head (unstressed or partially stressed syllables are pronounced higher or on the same level as the first stressed syllable of the head).
In short intonation groups where there is no head unstressed or partially stressed syllables preceding the nucleus are called the pre-nucleus.
2. Stressed and unstressed syllables up to the last stressed syllable constitute the head, body (R. Kingdon) or scale (Russian phoneticians) of the intonation group. Types of the head:
According to the direction of pitch movement within and between syllables,
Descending scales can be:
Ascending scales can be
Level scales can be
3. The nucleus - the last stressed syllable, within which fall or rise in the intonation group is accomplished, the syllable marked with the nuclear tone may take a level stress.
4. The tail - the syllables that follow the nucleus.
Types of the tail:
The terminal tone - the nucleus + the tail, which is actually a change of pitch at the junction of two sense-groups or sentences.
The number of terminal tones indicates the number of intonation groups.
5.Sentence stress (utterance stress)
Sentence stress - a special prominence given to one or more words so as to single them out among the other words in the same intonation group or in the whole sentence. It is achieved through the greater force of utterance and changes in the direction of voice pitch, accompanied by changes in the quantity of the vowels under stress. The sentence stress serves as the basis for the rhythmical structure of the sentence.
Nuclear stress is the strongest – it carries the most important information. Non-nuclear stresses are subdivided into full (in the head of an intonation group) and partial (in the head, pre-head, tail).
The word accent of a monosyllable may disappear in a sentence. The loss of stress in form words usually results in their quantitative, qualitative or zero reduction.
Different degrees of sentence-stress distinguish emphatic sentences from unemphatic ones.
Usually stressed: nouns; adjectives; numerals; interjections; demonstrative pronouns; emphatic pronouns; possessive pronouns (absolute form); interrogative pronouns; indefinite pronouns somebody, someone, something, anybody, anyone, anything (used as subject); indefinite negative pronouns no, none, no one, nobody, nothing; indefinite pronouns some, any (expressing quality); indefinite pronouns all, each, every, other, either, both; indefinite quantitative pronouns much, many, a little, a few; notional verbs; auxiliary verbs (negative contracted forms); two-word prepositions; two-word conjunctions; particles only, also, too, even, just.
Usually unstressed: personal pronouns; reflexive pronouns; reciprocal pronouns; relative pronouns; possessive pronouns; indefinite pronouns somebody, someone, something, anybody, anyone, anything (used as object); indefinite pronouns some, any (when expressing quantity); auxiliary verbs (affirmative form); one-word prepositions and conjunctions; articles; particles there, to; modal verbs (contracted forms and general questions are exceptions).
|Intonation Units and their Structure||Документи|
1. /American local dialects..docx
|1. Intonation. Its functions||Group structure|
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