Checked tone merger in the Nanjing dialect: an acoustic analysis


This study provides new evidence relating to a reported tonal merger for younger speakers of the Nanjing Dialect, a Lower Yangzi Mandarin dialect. Recent impressionistic accounts (Song 2009, Gu 2015) report an in-progress merger of checked tone syllables containing a glottal stop coda, first by coda deletion and then syllable lengthening. In the current study, an acoustic analysis of checked tone syllable realizations was performed on a younger speaker of the dialect. Rime duration and vowel creak data extracted from recordings conflict with earlier characterizations of the merger. Lack of vowel creak (glottal coda residue) on canonically checked syllables indicates outright elimination of glottal stops, while a significant duration difference between checked tone syllables and other lexical tones is retained.

Proceedings of NACCL-29
Chris Oakden
Chris Oakden
PhD Candidate

My research interests include phonological representation, Chinese tone sandhi, and process interactions