Is there an Intermediate Phrase in FrenchReport as inadecuate

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1 LPL - Laboratoire Parole et Langage

Abstract : The existence of an intermediate level of phrasing (ip) has been shown for several Germanic as well as Romance languages. There is some evidence for this intermediate level of phrasing in French even if its status is still controversial. Our assumption is that the emergence of an intermediate prosodic level (ip) in French is not simply linked to a specific focus or marked syntactic structure. Our hypothesis is that an ip boundary might appear within a broad focus utterance when the syntactic structure allows it. In this study we examined durational cues in a read speech corpus at normal and fast rates in which the target syllable was either adjacent to a prosodic boundary or word-internal. In line with our predictions, the results show that preboundary syllable length increases with prosodic boundary strength, in that longer syllables were masured at IP boundaries, and an intermediate degree of lengthening was found at ip boundaries. Our results suggest that prosodic cues are reinforced when there is an alignment between prosodic and syntactic boundaries and support the existence of an intermediate prosodic level in French.

Keywords : French Prosodic boundary intermediate phrase prosodic phrasing preboundary lengthening French.

Author: Amandine Michelas - Mariapaola D-Imperio -



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