In 1958, Fry published a very influential paper detailing the interaction between F0, duration, and intensity in the perception of lexical stress. His main finding was that that hearers of American English rely more on F0 than on the other correlates in the perception of lexical stress. He ranked these three correlates as follows: F0 > Duration > Intensity. However, subsequent research by other phoneticians has yielded a variety of rankings: F0 > Intensity > Duration, Duration > Intensity > F0, Intensity > F0 > Duration, Intensity > Duration > F0, etc. The goal of this paper is to investigate how speakers of Central Minnesota English encode and rank the three acoustic correlates of stress. Ten speakers (five female and five male) produced a total of 1080 tokens (18 words x 2 syllables x 10 participants x 3 correlates). Our findings indicate that the gender of the speaker plays a more prominent role in the production of lexical stress than previously expected.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Author Bio

Ettien Koffi, Ph.D., is a professor of Linguistics at St. Cloud State University, Minnesota, USA, specializing in acoustic phonetics (Speech Intelligibility). His research interests center around sociophonetic variations in Central Minnesota English, acoustic phonetic accounts of intelligibility in L2 English, and acoustic phonetic and general description of Anyi, a West African Language spoken in Cote d'Ivoire. He is the author of four books and numerous papers covering topics as varied as syntax, translation, language planning and policy, orthography, and indigenous literacy training manuals. He can be reached at enkoffi@stcloudstate.edu.

Grace Mertz earned a BA in English with an emphasis on linguistics and BA in Communication Studies from St. Cloud State University, MN. She grew up in St. Cloud, MN. She hopes to combine her passion for music, linguistics, and communication in graduate school with a specialization in Spoken Word research and performance. She can be reached via e-mail at megr1101@stcloudstate.edu.



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