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Friday, October 11 • 3:40pm - 5:30pm
(F4) Hejná & Kazmierski: Even Americans pre-aspirate

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Even Americans pre-aspirate

This paper focuses on pre-aspiration, a period of (primarily) glottal friction found in the sequences of sonorants and phonetically voiceless obstruents, as in hat [haht] and cash [kahʃ]. In particular, using the NSPC database, we show that pre-aspiration is attested also in American English, in contrast to what has been traditionally reported. We find pre-aspiration in 0-17% of the relevant tokens analysed, with the vast majority of the 60 speakers pre-aspirating. The frequency of occurrence is conditioned by region, sex, and segmental properties of the tokens. Importantly, we also report pre-aspiration being conditioned by speaking style/task. The phenomenon is dispreferred in spontaneous speech and occurs most frequently in word list data. We suggest that this last finding could be explained by a combination of language external as well as internal factors.


Michaela Hejná

Aarhus University

Kamil Kazmierski

Adam Mickiewicz University

Friday October 11, 2019 3:40pm - 5:30pm PDT
EMU Ballroom