Speech Prosody 2004

Nara, Japan
March 23-26, 2004

Final Rises in Spontaneous Swedish Computer-Directed Questions: Incidence and Function

David House

Department of Speech, Music and Hearing, Centre for Speech Technology KTH, Stockholm, Sweden

Phrase-final intonation was analysed in a subcorpus of Swedish computer-directed question utterances with the objective of investigating the extent to which final rises occur in spontaneous questions, and also to see if such rises might have pragmatic functions over and beyond the signalling of interrogative mode. Final rises occurred in 22 percent of the utterances. Final rises occurred mostly in conjunction with final focal accent. Children exhibited the largest percentage of final rises (32%), with women second (27%) and men lowest (17%). These results are discussed in terms of Swedish question intonation and the pragmatic social function of rises in a biological account of intonation.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  House, David (2004): "Final rises in spontaneous Swedish computer-directed questions: incidence and function", In SP-2004, 115-118.