12th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Florence, Italy
August 27-31. 2011

Articulatory Reduction in Mandarin Chinese Words

Jeffrey Berry, Sunjing Ji, Ian Fasel, Diana Archangeli

University of Arizona, USA

We investigate the effect of reduction induced by repetition during articulation. Specifically, we report how tongue movement differs between the first mention of Mandarin words and that of later repetitions using ultrasound imaging. Two analyses were carried out in this paper: tongue deformation and timing. We used Dynamic Time Warping to measure the tongue deformation from a neutral position. We used Functional Data Analysis to measure the timing difference between the first and later repetitions. We found that the tongue deviates less from the neutral and moves faster in time for the later repetitions, namely the more reduced ones. Our study shows promise for more thorough investigation of speech reduction from the articulatory perspective, and provides insights for constructing applications for speech synthesis/recognition towards more natural speech.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Berry, Jeffrey / Ji, Sunjing / Fasel, Ian / Archangeli, Diana (2011): "Articulatory reduction in Mandarin Chinese words", In INTERSPEECH-2011, 2809-2812.