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Nuclear tones in Hong Kong and British English

Hudson, T., Setter, J. and Mok, P. (2019) Nuclear tones in Hong Kong and British English. In: Calhoun, S., Escudero, P., Tabain, M. and Warren, P. (eds.) Proceedings of the 19th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences, Melbourne, Australia 2019. Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc., Canberra, Australia, pp. 320-323. ISBN 9780646800691

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Abstract/Summary

This paper contributes data towards a phonological description of intonation in Hong Kong English (HKE), an emergent, ‘nativising’ but under-described variety of English spoken primarily as the second language of L1 Cantonese speakers. We demonstrate choice and realisation of nuclear tones for ten HKE-speaking and ten British English (BrE)-speaking university students. All speakers were recorded undertaking a storytelling task in which different nuclear tones are canonically associated with different types of utterance, e.g., yes/no question and sarcastic statement. New BrE data not only provide a point of comparison, but also demonstrate ways in which form and function of contemporary BrE prosody have changed since the textbook descriptions of the last century. Greatest disparity between the groups is found for ‘tag’ phrases such as in checking, and in the paralinguistic use of rise-fall. Production of target contours ranged from 64 to 86% for the BrE cohort, 43-71% for HKE.

Item Type:Book or Report Section
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Interdisciplinary centres and themes > Centre for Literacy and Multilingualism (CeLM)
Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Literature and Languages > English Language and Applied Linguistics
ID Code:80883
Publisher:Australasian Speech Science and Technology Association Inc.

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