10th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Brighton, United Kingdom
September 6-10, 2009

Investigating Changes in the Rhythm of Maori Over Time

Margaret Maclagan (1), Catherine I. Watson (2), Jeanette King (1), Ray Harlow (3), Laura Thompson (2), Peter Keegan (2)

(1) University of Canterbury, New Zealand
(2) University of Auckland, New Zealand
(3) University of Waikato, New Zealand

Present-day Maori elders comment that the mita (which includes rhythm) of the Maori language, has changed over time. This paper presents the first results in a study of the change of Maori rhythm. PVI analyses did not capture this change. Perceptual experiments, using extracts of speech low-pass filtered to 400 Hz, demonstrated that Maori and English speech could be distinguished. Listeners who spoke Maori were more accurate than those who spoke only English. The English and Maori speech of groups of different speakers born at different times was perceived differently, indicating that the rhythm of Maori has indeed changed over time.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Maclagan, Margaret / Watson, Catherine I. / King, Jeanette / Harlow, Ray / Thompson, Laura / Keegan, Peter (2009): "Investigating changes in the rhythm of maori over time", In INTERSPEECH-2009, 1535-1538.