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Interrogative Intonation in North Kyungsang Korean: Language-specificity and Universality of Acoustic and Perceptual Cues

Lee, Hye-Sook

This paper investigates intonational characteristics of questions distinct from statements in North Kyungsang Korean. A variety of F0 targets are compared between the two sentence types, including pitch accent F0 peak, utterance-final edge, pitch range and F0 valleys. The acoustic analyses show that yes/no questions have significantly higher F0 values at the right edge and higher and earlier occurrences of the rightmost F0 valley.

Perceptual salience of these acoustic cues is investigated through forced-choice identification tests, where it turns out that only the utterance-final edge F0 is a strong perceptual cue to distinguish between questions and statements. This study suggests that NK Korean conforms to the “universality” of question intonation in a broad sense, but the realization of acoustic cues and their perceptual salience are constrained by some kind of language-specificity.

This paper is copyrighted, and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) - see
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