12th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Florence, Italy
August 27-31. 2011

Phrasal Prominences do not need Pitch Movements: Postfocal Phrasal Heads in Italian

Giuliano Bocci (1), Cinzia Avesani (2)

(1) Università di Bologna, Italy
(2) CNR-ISTC, Italy

Informationally Given phrases following an instance of focus are generally realized in a compressed pitch range and are generally assumed to lack prosodic prominences. In this paper, we address the question of the metrical representation of postfocal constituents in Tuscan Italian. The results of a production experiment show that, despite their being realized with a low and flat F0 contour, postfocal constituents are not extrametrical, but are phrased and assigned phrasal metrical prominences of phrasal level. The impact of our results on the prosodic representation of Italian and on the information structure-prosody interface are discussed.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Bocci, Giuliano / Avesani, Cinzia (2011): "Phrasal prominences do not need pitch movements: postfocal phrasal heads in Italian", In INTERSPEECH-2011, 1357-1360.