Temporal coordination between focus prosody and pointing gestures in Cantonese
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AbstractThis study investigates the temporal relationship between focus prosody and co-speech pointing gestures in Hong Kong Cantonese. Previous studies have generally shown a close temporal proximity between prosodic and gestural prominence: Gestural prominence tends to be aligned with stressed syllables or words. However, this finding was based solely on studies of stress and pitch-accent languages, and no study has yet tested the phenomenon in a non-stress tone language. Ten native speakers of Hong Kong Cantonese participated in a picture-verification task in which pointing was elicited along with verbal corrections. The acoustic results showed that the corrective focus was marked solely by an on-focus durational increase. The gestural results revealed that there was an alignment between prosodic and gestural prominence, as most of the gesture apices were produced within the focused words. However, in contrast to previous findings, no significant effect of F0 (tone) or focus position was found. Instead, most speakers consistently aligned their apices with the same syllable position in disyllables. Based on the current findings, the prosodic anchor of prosody-gesture alignment is suggested to be the focused word in this language.
All Author(s) ListFung H.S.H., Mok P.P.K.
Journal nameJournal of Phonetics
Year2018
Month11
Volume Number71
PublisherACADEMIC PRESS LTD
Pages113 - 125
ISSN0095-4470
LanguagesEnglish-United States
KeywordsCo-speech gesture, focus prosody, Cantonese, multimodal communication

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