Abstract:  "A review of perceptual cues and cue robustness"

by Richard Wright

In Bruce Hayes, Robert Kirchner, and Donca Steriade, eds., Phonetically-Based Phonology, Cambridge University Press (2004).


This chapter is an overview of perceptual cues to segmental contrasts. It summarizes previous findings on the type and distribution of cues in the speech signal, and looks at three factors that contribute to the relative perceptual strength of a perceptual contrasts (robustness of encoding): redundancy of cues, the auditory impact of cues, and the resistance of cues to environmental masking. The chapter then relates perceptual robustness to segmental ordering: the most commonly attested segmental sequences, such as alternating consonants and vowels, result in the most robust perceptual encoding of linguistic information, while particularly weak encoding can result from sequences of consonants.

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