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Title: Voice quality features in the production of pharyngeal consonants by Iraqi Arabic speakers
Authors: Alsiraih, Wasan
Issue Date: 2013
Publisher: Newcastle University
Abstract: This study investigates nasalisation and laryngealisation in the production of pharyngeal consonants in Iraqi Arabic (IA) and as potential voice quality (VQ) settings of IA speakers in general. Pharyngeal consonants have been the subject of investigation in many studies on Arabic, primarily due to the wide range of variation in their realisation across dialects, including approximant, fricative, and stop variants. This is the first quantitative study of its kind to extend these findings to IA and to investigate whether any of the variants and/or VQ features are dialect- specific. The study offers a detailed auditory and acoustic account of the realisations of pharyngeal consonants as produced by nine male speakers of three Iraqi dialects: Baghdad (representing Central gelet), Basra (representing Southern gelet) and Mosul (representing Northern qeltu) (Blanc, 1964; Ingham, 1997). Acoustic cues of nasalisation and phonation types are investigated in isolated vowels, oral, nasal, and pharyngeal environments in order to unravel the source of the nasalised and laryngealised VQ percept and to establish whether their manifestations are categorical or particular to certain contexts. Results suggest a range of realisations for the pharyngeals that are conditioned by word position and dialect. Regardless of realisation, VQ measurements suggest that: 1- nasalisation increases when pharyngeals are adjacent to nasals, beyond what is expected of a nasal environment; 2- vowels neighbouring pharyngeals show more nasalisation than in oral environments; 3- vowels in pharyngeal contexts and isolation show more laryngealisation compared with nasal and oral contexts; 4- both nasals and pharyngeals show progressive effect of nasalisation, and pharyngeals show a progressive effect of laryngealisation; 5- /ħ/ shows more nasalisation but less laryngealisation effect on neighbouring vowels than /ʕ/; and 6- Baghdad speech is the most nasalised and laryngealised and Basra speech the least. These results coincide with observations on Muslim Baghdadi gelet having a guttural quality (Bellem, 2007). The study reveals that the overall percept of a nasalised and laryngealised VQ in IA is a local feature rather than a general vocal setting.
Description: PhD Thesis
Appears in Collections:School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences

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