STUDIES IN THE PHONOLOGY OF ASIAN LANGUAGES. IV. VIETNAMESE VOWELS.
Technical rept. for Jul 65-Jul 66.
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA LOS ANGELES ACOUSTICS PHONETICS RESEARCH LAB
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Characteristics of the Hanoi dialect of Vietnamese, as compared with the two other major dialects, Hue and Saigon, were noted, and the eleven vowel phonemes of Hanoi were placed under spectrographic study. More than 5500 spectrograms were made of 869 common words containing the vowel phonemes. Formant 1 and Formant 2 frequency measurements of the steady state of vowels were obtained. Measurements were converted into graphic representations on formant charts. Domains of the eleven vowel phonemes occupy definable areas on the formant charts, but the range of variation is, sometimes, great and domains of neighboring vowels may overlap. Study of environmental effect on the steady state of the vowel reveals that drop tone lowers the vowel quality. Palatal and velar nasals and affricate c and stop k also have a lowering and centralizing effect on the preceding vowel. If the environment factors are kept constant, certain vowels are distinguishable according to F1 and F2 measurements. The domains of the other vowels show major overlap, and no particular environmental effect was identified. Author