Print

Print


>In a message dated 9/26/2001 8:25:29 PM Pacific Daylight Time,
>[log in to unmask] writes:
>
>> Yeah, I've noticed that /k/ and /g/ are a much harder pair to
>> distinguish in Japanese than /p/ and /b/ or /t/ and /d/.  Is there
>> something about the velar POA that makes them harder to distinguish?
[snip]
>>
>     Yes, in a word.  Voicing is harder to keep up the further you go back in
>stops and in fricatives.  In fact, voicing is hard to keep up for
>non-sibilants, so they often turn into stops, such as the [D] in the English
>"the".  Our professor showed us most of the time that [D] is really [d_d]
>(dental stop--is that the way to do it?).  But, yeah, there was some formula
>he showed us for how, on stops, voicing becomes more and more difficult the
>further back you go, and this can be shown where even in languages with a k/g
>contrast, [k] appears more than [g] (a given), and all other voiced
>consonants appear far more than [g] as well.  The reason has to do with
>surface area and the aerodynamic voicing constraint...  We're learning this
>right now, so I'm no expert--hopefully by the time the midterm rolls around I
>will be.  :)
>
Actually, this is kind of cool, since it gives me a reason of sorts to drop [g]
out of Simafira, but not the other voiced stops, [b] and [d].  Still unusual,
but not without reason.  I had something like that in mind just from observation
of how I personally pronounced them - but didn't have the justification.

--
Steve Kramer   -=oOo=-   scooter at buser dot net
Thought for today:
  "You! What PLANET is this?"
  Dr. McCoy, "The City on the Edge of Forever"