Hajek, John; Stevens, Mary (2008): Vowel duration, compression and lengthening in stressed syllables in Central and Southern varieties of standard Italian. Interspeech 2008, 22. - 26. September 2008, Brisbane.




This study is the first investigation of the effects of regional accent on temporal organization, specifically of vowel duration, in stressed syllables in standard Italian. We examine possible compression effects on the duration of stressed vowels according to word-position (final, penult and antepenult) and syllable type (open vs. closed) in central v. southern varieties of (standard) Italian. Our results show significant regional differences in some contexts, i.e. closed syllables, and antepenultimate position, but not in others. We consider the implications of our results for the phonological description and phonetic investigation of Italian, and the extent to which any such differences may be accounted for.