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Stress, Accent and Vowel Durations in Finnish

By Kari Suomi

Abstract

The paper summarises recent research on the interaction of prominence and vowel durations in Finnish, a language with fixed initial stress and a quantity opposition in both vowels and consonants; to be more accurate, the research has been conducted on Northern Finnish. It is shown that, in one-foot words, there are four statistically distinct, non-contrastive duration degrees for phonologically single vowels, and three such degrees for phonologically double vowels. It is shown that the distributions of these duration degrees are crucially determined by moraic structure. Also sentence accent has a moraic alignment, with a tonal rise occurring on the word’s first mora and a fall on the second mora. It is argued that the durational alternations are motivated by the particular way in which accent is realised.

Year: 2013
OAI identifier: oai:CiteSeerX.psu:10.1.1.306.5969
Provided by: CiteSeerX
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