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Thursday, October 10 • 4:50pm - 5:15pm
D'Onofrio & Eckert: Experimental evidence for iconicity in variation

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Experimental evidence for iconicity in variation

Iconicity is fundamental to sociolinguistic variation: intensification of a variant, whether through increased frequency of occurrence or phonetic intensification, intensifies its indexicality. Iconicity can also be involved in the choice of variant, playing on a variety of phonetic features such as hyperarticulation, fortition, lenition, acoustic frequency, and rhythm. Based on a series of social evaluation experiments, we provide evidence that hearers perceive a relation between acoustic frequency of a vowel and affective stance. We then move beyond the frequency code to show that consonant fortition — the coalescence of increased duration and amplitude of a stop burst — has a similar effect. Finally, we show that that rhythm — in particular, the presence of post-tonic lengthening in a word — can heighten that effect.


Annette D'Onofrio

Northwestern University

Penelope Eckert

Stanford University

Thursday October 10, 2019 4:50pm - 5:15pm PDT
EMU Crater Lake N
  T: Iconicity & indexicality & enregisterment
  • Session type Talk
  • Chair: Sharese King