14thAnnual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Lyon, France
August 25-29, 2013

Resistance is Futile — The Intonation Between Continuation Rise and Calling Contour in German

Oliver Niebuhr

Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel, Germany

German knows two plateau-based phrase-final intonation contours: the high level plateau of the continuation rise and the descending plateau sequence of the calling contour. They occur within a narrow scaling range of only a few semitones. The paper presents production and perception evidence for a third plateau-based phrase-final intonation contour inside this narrow scaling range. The new plateau contour shows a F0 decrease of between 1.3 st (in the form of a slightly declining plateau or a descending plateau sequence), involves additional lengthening of the vowels underneath the plateau, and occurs when resistance is futile, i.e. when speakers signal that they finally, but reluctantly, give in to a demand of the dialogue partner. Phonological implications are briefly outlined.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Niebuhr, Oliver (2013): "Resistance is futile — the intonation between continuation rise and calling contour in German", In INTERSPEECH-2013, 225-229.