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(Handout Three) Articulatory Phonetics Physiology of Speech Production The Speech Organs vocal tract- the area between the vocal cords and the lips glottis- opening between the vocal cords and it is located in the voice box, or larynx pharynx- tubular part of the throat located above the larynx oral cavity- mouth nasal cavity- nose and the plumbing that connects it to the throat and sinuses The production of any sound involves the movement of air. Most sounds are produced by pushing lung air through the vocal cords – thin bands of membrane- up the throat, and into the mouth or nose, and finally out of the body. How can we distinguish one sound from another? The size and shape of the air vessel make a difference. The vocal tract acts as a vessel of air. When it changes shape, different sounds are produced. Consonants and Vowels The sounds of all languages fall into two classes: consonants and vowels. Consonants are produced with some restriction or closure of the vocal tract that impedes the flow of air from the lungs. Place of Articulation We classify consonants according to where in the vocal tract the airflow restriction occurs. Refer to the top of the chart on page xi in your textbook. Manner of Articulation Speech sounds also vary in the way the airstream is affected as it flows up and out of the mouth and nose. It may be blocked or unblocked; the vocal cords may vibrate or not vibrate.


Voiced and Voiceless Sounds If the vocal cords are apart when speaking, air flows freely through the glottis into the oral cavity. Sounds produced in this way are voiceless: [p] and [s] in super are voiceless If the vocal cords are together, the airstream forces its way through and causes them to vibrate. Such sounds are voiced: [b] and [z] in buzz are voiced Voiceless sounds fall into two classes depending on the timing of the vocal cord closure. Aspirated and Unaspirated Sounds Aspirated - when a brief puff of air escapes before the glottis closes pit - vocal cords remain open for a very short time after the lips come apart to release the p Unaspirated - vocal cords start vibrating as soon as the lips open when we pronounce the p in spit Nasal and Oral Sounds Oral Sounds - sounds produced with the velum up, blocking the air from escaping through the nose Nasal Sounds - when the velum is not in the raised position, air escapes through both the nose and mouth [m] nasal [b] oral Nasal- air moves out of your nose


Stops- you stop and then release the air Fricative- means you push air through a small space between two speech organs Stop and Fricative or Affricative- you stop the air and then push it through a small space Glide- you move parts of your mouth while making the sound Sides of Tongue or Liquids- you push air around the sides of the tongue

Vowels Vowels are pronounced with no significant blockage of air as it is pushed out of the lungs. The quality of a vowel depends on the shape of the vocal tract as the air passes through. Different parts of the tongue may be high or low in the mouth; the lips may be spread or pursed; the velum may be raised or lowered. We classify vowels according to three questions: 1. How high or low in the mouth is the tongue? 2. How forward or backward in the mouth is the tongue? 3. Are the lips rounded (pursed) or spread?


Handout 3 Articulatory Phonetics