S-Space Language Education Institute (언어교육원) Language Research (어학연구) Language Research (어학연구) Volume 52 Number 1/3 (2016)
A Comparative Study of Word-final Laterals: General American English vs. Metropolitan French
- Ahn, Miyeon
- Issue Date
- Language Research, Vol.52 No.2, pp. 197-212
- The purpose of this study is to examine and compare the acoustic properties of the lateral approximant /l/ in two different languages, English and French. Among various dialects of the two languages, General American English (GA) and Metropolitan French (MF) are explored. The two dialects are most commonly found in each language and, arguably, considered as standard in both languages. Based on a production study, several acoustic properties were compared, including temporal duration, the three formants - F1, F2 and F3 -, the trajectories of laterals and darkness of the lateral by comparing the difference between the second and the first formants. The experiment showed that unlike the English one, the French lateral approximant is characterized by significant consonantal release that is consistently found at the end of the lateral articulation. English lateral itself is mostly longer than French one while the combined length of the lateral and the release is longer in French. The F2 of the French lateral was found to be significantly higher than that of the English one. Also, English laterals are darker than French ones. Time-normalized trajectories showed that each formant value varies at the onset phrase of the lateral articulation but the various formant values become merged as the lateral articulation proceeds.