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Seminar: 10/10 - Susanne Gahl

11:00 to 12:30 PM      at:  Tolman 5101

Department of Linguistics and Cognitive Science Program, UC Berkeley
"Pronunciation variation as a tool for psycholinguistic research."

Tokens of the same word or sentence will usually sound slightly different, due to variations in speaking rate, voice quality, and a myriad of other linguistic and non-linguistic factors. Research in the Linguistics
department's Psycholinguistics lab uses variation in pronunciation as a window on the mechanisms underlying language production. A particular focus of our research is on ways in which pronunciation variation reveals the probabilistic and malleable nature of linguistic knowledge. A working hypothesis guiding our research is that probabilities at all levels of linguistic structure affect language production and comprehension. Pronunciation variation in part reflects these probabilities. This talk will describe several studies examining the sources and theoretical implications of pronunciation variation.