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Conference Papers Year : 2000

Perceived tone "targets" and pitch accent identification in Italian


This study investigates the role of temporal alignment, F0 and peak shape in determining perceived tonal target values in Neapolitan Italian. In this variety, the alignment of the accent peak appears to be a strong perceptual cue to the question/statement identification (d'Imperio and House, 1997), everything else being equal. In the present study, the contour of a question, uttered by a female speaker of Neapolitan Italian, was stylized and resynthesized means of PSOLA. A set of stimuli was created in which either tonal alignment was varied, while height was kept constant, or height was varied orthogonally toent. For the alignment manipulation, an additional variable was the shape of the accent peak, which could be either flat (creating a short plateau) or sharp. Thirty Neapolitan subjects listened to the stimuli and identified each as a question or a statement. The results suggest that the contribution of peak height to the question/statement identification is much less important than that of target alignment. Moreover, peak shape affects the perceived alignment of the target tone, in that flat peak stimuli cause the perceived target to be displaced towards the end of the plateau.


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Dates and versions

inria-00099271 , version 1 (26-09-2006)


  • HAL Id : inria-00099271 , version 1


Mariapaola d'Imperio, Jacques Terken, Michel Pitermann. Perceived tone "targets" and pitch accent identification in Italian. 8th International Conference on Speech Science & Technology - SST'2000, 2000, Canberra, Australia, pp.206-211. ⟨inria-00099271⟩
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