Culture and Gender of Voice Pitch: A Sociophonetic Comparison of the Japanese and Americans

Overview

The major task of this book is a sociophonetic exploration of voice pitch characteristics of speakers across the cultures of Japan and America. This volume makes a cogent argument for the socio-cultural role of voice pitch in the expression of emotion and politeness and how culture and gender can intersect with each other. The book tenders acoustic phonetic evidence (as well as discourse analyses) in construing how an individual's voice pitch modulation utilized in conversational speech is reflected in this ...

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Overview

The major task of this book is a sociophonetic exploration of voice pitch characteristics of speakers across the cultures of Japan and America. This volume makes a cogent argument for the socio-cultural role of voice pitch in the expression of emotion and politeness and how culture and gender can intersect with each other. The book tenders acoustic phonetic evidence (as well as discourse analyses) in construing how an individual's voice pitch modulation utilized in conversational speech is reflected in this intersection as it demonstrates several methodological innovations crucial for sociophonetic research. Observations of people's voice pitch commonly made impressionistically not only contribute to this prosodic feature's perceptual stereotypes, but also inform us about our attitudes towards certain voice pitch characteristics. This volume includes an extensive review of these impressionistic remarks and acoustic phonetic investigations of voice pitch initiated in the early 20th century in the two nations, the latter of which contributed to both confirming and reconsidering the former. The volume further alludes to how attitudinal differences between these cultures were found to surface in the acoustically measured voice pitch modulation patterns obtained for this volume, stressing that voice pitch is capable of revealing various socio-cultural aspects of human behaviors.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781845539061
  • Publisher: Equinox Publishing
  • Publication date: 6/18/2010
  • Pages: 174
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures ix

List of Tables x

Acknowledgements xi

Notes on Transcription of Japanese xii

Introduction 1

Pitch 1

Physical differences between male and female larynges and voice pitch 5

Cultural differences between men's and women's voice pitch 7

Impressionistic observations of voice pitch 9

Acoustic analyses of voice pitch 9

Voice pitch and emotion 10

Voice pitch and politeness 11

Voice pitch, politeness and gender 14

1 Impressionistic observations of men's and women's voice 16

Novels 16

Etiquette books/handbooks 23

Impressionistic comments by scholars 30

2 Acoustic analyses of voice pitch 36

Early analyses 37

More recent analyses 46

Voice pitch and emotion research 51

3 Comparative sociophonetic research of voice pitch 60

Studies using passages and constructed dialogues read by informants 61

Study analyzing speech derived from task-completion by informants 65

Studies utilizing conversational speech data 65

4 Voice pitch and expression of emotion 91

Expression of emotion 91

Cross-cultural research on universality of emotional expression 94

Cross-cultural research on emotion and Japan 96

Japanese psychology of amae and enryo 101

Emotion and intonation (pitch modulation) 102

5 Voice Pitch, Politeness and Gender 115

Politeness 116

Politeness, expression of emotion and voice pitch for Japanese people: my findings 122

Gender, voice pitch and politeness: my findings 131

6 Conclusion 142

References 145

Index 159

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