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CDS is not what you think - Hypoarticulation in Danish Child Directed Speech

Publikation: KonferencebidragPosterForskning

Child-directed speech (CDS) is often seen as more or less invariant across human population (Fernald et al. 1989, Kuhl et al. 1997) with a slower, more articulated and more prosodically varied speech. However, studies from non-western countries (Schieffelin & Ochs 1983, Ratner & Pye 1984) suggests that CDS is more of a cultural practise than it is a human universal. In this study we focus on Danish which is characterised for instance by extreme phonetic reduction, a wide variety of vocalic sounds (appr. 60, compared to ca. 20 in US English, Basbøll 2005) and delays in vocabulary acquisition (Bleses et al. 2008). A previous study relying on lab-elicited stimuli indicated that Danish CDS might be peculiar, with a surprising lack of increased articulation (Bohn 2013). In the current study, we focused on longer naturalistic recordings in an environment known and safe for both child and mother: their own home. We collected 1 hour of spontaneously occurring CDS between 30 Danish mothers and their 12-24 month old children, as well as 15 minutes of naturalistic adult-directed speech from the same mothers. Here we present the results from the first 10 mother-child and mother-adult pairs. We find common CDS acoustic traits: increased pitch and pitch variability and lower speech rate. However, we also find a significantly reduced vowel space when compared to adult-directed speech, which is especially surprising given the wide range of Danish vocalic sounds. We are currently extending the analysis to the full corpus and investigating hypotheses to motivate the vocalic hypo-articulation: reduction of diversity in vocalic sounds employed, relation to general phonetic reduction, parenting attitudes, etc. The findings help paint a more nuanced picture of the features of CDS, its relation to linguistic and cultural affordances and the many complex routes to learn a language.
Udgivelsesår27 feb. 2018
Antal sider1
StatusIkke-udgivet - 27 feb. 2018
BegivenhedNijmegen lectures 2018: Understanding how children learn language: What progress has been made since 1965? - Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, Nijmegen, Holland
Varighed: 26 feb. 201828 feb. 2018


KonferenceNijmegen lectures 2018
LokationMax Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics


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