Kochetov, Alexei; Pouplier, Marianne
Phonetic variability and grammatical knowledge: an articulatory study of Korean place assimilation.
In: Phonology, Vol. 25, No. 3: pp. 399-431
The study reported here uses articulatory data to investigate Korean place assimilation
of coronal stops followed by labial or velar stops, both within words and
across words. The results show that this place-assimilation process is highly
variable, both within and across speakers, and is also sensitive to factors such as the
place of articulation of the following consonant, the presence of a word boundary
and, to some extent, speech rate. Gestures affected by the process are generally
reduced categorically (deleted), while sporadic gradient reduction of gestures is
also observed. We further compare the results for coronals to our previous findings
on the assimilation of labials, discussing implications of the results for grammatical
models of phonological/phonetic competence. The results suggest that speakers’
language-particular knowledge of place assimilation has to be relatively
detailed and context-sensitive, and has to encode systematic regularities about its
obligatory/variable application as well as categorical/gradient realisation.