11th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Makuhari, Chiba, Japan
September 26-30. 2010

Interaction of Syntax-Marked Focus and Wh-Question Induced Focus in Standard Chinese

Yuan Jia, Aijun Li

Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, China

The present study mainly investigates the interaction of syntax-marked focus and wh-question induced focus on the formation of F0 patterns in Standard Chinese (Hereinafter, SC). Acoustic experiment demonstrates that the syntax-marked (lian or shi) focus can co-exist with the wh-question induced focus. The results are two folds: (i) the two kinds of focuses can add together to trigger more obvious F0 prominence on the under-focus constituents and F0 compression on the post-focus constituents; (ii) they can realize prominences simultaneously on difference constituents in one sentence. Therefore, the F0 pattern of SC presents itself to observe the nuclear prominence and pre-nuclear prominence classification as in English. Specifically, the single focus induces the nuclear prominence and the dual focus triggers both nuclear prominence and pre-nuclear prominence.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Jia, Yuan / Li, Aijun (2010): "Interaction of syntax-marked focus and wh-question induced focus in standard Chinese", In INTERSPEECH-2010, 1780-1783.