The acoustical consequences of articulatory maneuvers of [y] are studied in model experiments in order to obtain insights into articulator programming and speech motor control by elucidating the role of each component maneuver of a speech segment in setting up vocal tract resonance conditions for the spectral features of the speech wave. The maneuvers of [y] are found to provide a maximum and stable plain-flat spectral contrast with [i]. The results can be generalized to different vocal tract sizes. Tongue retraction and larynx depression are rejected as compensations to counteract labial undershoot. Larynx depression is complementary to lip rounding and restores spectral sensitivity to palatal and pharyngeal tongue movements otherwise disturbed by the labial activity. Spectral sensitivity then remains the same for [i] and [y], and there is no need for separate compensation programs for each of these phones.
Subject classification (UKÄ)
- General Language Studies and Linguistics