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Re: Most phonetically beautiful sentence in a natlang

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  • James Kane
    So, the expression pronounced by females as welda yoi wanda la yoldia would be pronounced by males as ferta toi fanta la toldia . I wonder if at this
    Message 1 of 46 , Aug 28, 2013
      'So, the expression pronounced by females as "welda yoi wanda la
      yoldia" would be pronounced by males as "ferta toi fanta la toldia".'

      I wonder if at this point the two would be mutually unintillegible. They are some very big contrasts.

      I think differences in pronunciation in women's and men's speech is quite a common thing, just as many languages have slight lexical differences as well. I know that Chinese woman frequently pronounce the alveolopalatal series <q j x> /ts\_h ts\ s\/ as [ts_jh ts_j s_j].

      James

      On 29/08/2013, at 1:53 AM, Leonardo Castro <leolucas1980@...> wrote:

      > 2013/8/27 H. S. Teoh <hsteoh@...>:
      >> ObConlang: do your conlang(s) have court-dictated (i.e., rigid) euphony
      >> rules, or do they have more mellifluous euphony rules? (Or do they have
      >> no euphony rules? Or no euphony whatsoever? :-P)
      >
      > I don't have a conlang with euphony rules, but once I outlined some
      > phonotactic rules to what would be the most smooth, suave, soft
      > language I could imagine. I have also considered to create a conlang
      > with different pronunciations for males and females that could have
      > been evolved from stereotypes of how females and males should speak (I
      > wonder if there's anything remotely similar to this in natlangs
      > [similar to the Nushu script phenomenon but afecting phoneme
      > pronunciation]).
      >
      > Some of the imagined sex-related phone changes are:
      >
      > In the beggining of words:
      > M - F
      > [v] -> [f] - [v] -> [w]
      > [d] -> [t] - [d] -> [j]
      >
      > In the middle:
      > [lt] -> [rt] - [lt] -> [ld]
      > [nd] -> [nt] - [nd] -> [nd]
      >
      > So, the expression pronounced by females as "welda yoi wanda la
      > yoldia" would be pronounced by males as "ferta toi fanta la toldia".
      >
      >>
      >> AFMCL, Ebisédian doesn't really have very much phonology to speak of; I
      >> made it when I was young and inexperienced, and basically didn't put
      >> very much thought into its phonological aspects. :) So there aren't any
      >> euphony rules to speak of, though I did have somebody comment that the
      >> proliferation of glottal stops, caused by the lack of any vowel glides,
      >> makes it good for singing.
      >>
      >>
      >> Tatari Faran has quite a number of phonological mutations to preserve
      >> euphony. Euphony, however, is in the ear of the native speakers; it may
      >> not correspond with *our* sense of aesthetics. :) Nevertheless, I think
      >> TF does have some nice mutation rules, e.g.:
      >>
      >> huna + na -> hunan da (vs. *huna na)
      >> asusu + sei -> asusei (vs. *asusu sei)
      >> panis + -is -> panitis (vs. *panisis)
      >> pasanan + -an -> pasanaran (vs. *pasananan)
      >>
      >>
      >> My new alienlang also has some mutation rules, but since it's still very
      >> incomplete, I can't really say very much about its overall phonological
      >> characteristics. One of its most prominent features is the
      >> fricativisation of clusters of stops:
      >>
      >> ehrlutek /'ExR\_0lUtEk/ -> ehrlutekmi /,ExR\_0lUtEx'mi/ (/k/ -> /x/)
      >> apfat /'apfVt/ -> apfattek /'apfVTtEk/ (/t/ -> /T/)
      >> gorl /'gOrl/ -> gorltai /'gOrKtaj/ (/l/ -> /K/)
      >>
      >> This fricativisation may appear word-internally as well:
      >>
      >> glett [glETt] (vs. *[glEt:])
      >
      > Fricativisation is something I like about Spanish /b/, /g/ and /d/
      > that makes it somewhat more mellifluous.
      >
      >>
      >> Another feature is the lenition of /tu/ after /n/ or /N/:
      >>
      >> bufen + -tu -> bufendu (vs. *bufentu)
      >> cheŋ + -tu -> cheŋdu (vs. *cheŋtu)
      >>
      >> I'd say both Tatari Faran and the alienlang have mellifluous mutation
      >> rules, but "mellifluous" isn't exactly how I'd describe the alienlang,
      >> what with its [r] / [xR\_0] contrast. :) That's a voiced alveolar trill
      >> vs. a pre-fricativised voiceless uvular trill -- the latter imparts
      >> quite a harsh feel to the language due to its frequent occurrence (e.g.,
      >> in _ehrlu_ "tongue/speak", _ahr-_ "two-/double-", _hreis_ "three",
      >> _shtehr_ "four", _hrvat_ "five" -- it's written as <hr>).
      >
      > BTW, I wonder what a language with the maximum quantity of harmonizing
      > features would sound like (a challenge to someone?). For instance,
      > imagine a language with
      >
      > * vowel harmony within words (maybe multidimensional: nasalization,
      > ATR, roundness, etc.);
      >
      > * fricativisation and voicing of consonants when they occur intervocalic;
      >
      > * suppression of any consonant cluster involving two non-nasal stops;
      >
      > * clustering of nasal stops only with their homorganic;
      >
      > * clustering of liquid consonants only with their homorganic;
      >
      > * what more can I suggest?
    • Leonardo Castro
      ... Just imagine that, for some random fashion, it starts to be considered cute to pronounce non-flapped intervocalic t and to omit final r in AmE . So,
      Message 46 of 46 , Aug 29, 2013
        2013/8/29 Roger Mills <romiltz@...>:
        > Somewhere in my ancient research I read of a tribal language in Indonesia where the men pronounced the /s/ phoneme as [s]. while the women used [h]. I don't think that would lead to too much confusion.
        >
        > Robin Lakoff, years ago, and Deborah Tannen (IIRC) have pointed out different intonation patterns for women in Amer.English.

        Just imagine that, for some random fashion, it starts to be considered
        "cute" to pronounce non-flapped intervocalic "t" and to omit final "r"
        in AmE . So, women could start to pronounce "better" as [b'Et@] while
        men would avoid this "non-masculine" pronunciation and pronounce
        [b'E4@r].

        Actually, there is at least one pronunciation features apparently more
        associated with young females in BrP, the elongation of nasals; listen
        to people imitating it in the following video, at times 4:15 and 5:07:

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DRyCUu5lHiY

        This video shows the parts of two interviews with humorists where they
        imitate several BrP regional accents. They are somewhat exaggerated
        the most typical regional features, but I think that the imitations
        really give a good idea of what the real accents sound.

        (I had previously sent this message only to Roger but I intended to
        send to the list.)

        >
        >
        >
        > ________________________________
        > From: Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets <tsela.cg@...>
        > To: CONLANG@...
        > Sent: Thursday, August 29, 2013 5:31 AM
        > Subject: Re: Most phonetically beautiful sentence in a natlang
        >
        >
        > On 29 August 2013 11:04, Alex Fink <000024@...> wrote:
        >
        >> The language is now called Garifuna, and apparently most of the
        >> speaker-gender contrasts are obsolescent, though it seems to still survive
        >> robustly enough in the singular pronouns: men have 1sg _au_, 2sg _amürü_,
        >> 3sg _ligía_, women 1sg _nugía_ 2sg _bugía_ 3sg _tugía_. (_ü_ is /1/ I
        >> think.)
        >>
        >>
        > Such speaker-gender contrast can be very stable actually. Cue for instance
        > Japanese, where it's well known that males and females will use different
        > sets of personal pronouns (although some personal pronouns are somewhat
        > neutral and can be used by both). It goes further, with differences in
        > grammar and lexicon as well, although one cannot talk about different
        > languages.
        >
        > Gender "diglossia" is not an unknown phenomenon, although it usually
        > appears as dialectical differences at most (slight phonological and grammar
        > changes, often different lexemes as used by men and women). Typically men
        > will know the women's dialect and vice-versa, but they'll never speak it,
        > except when quoting a member of the opposite sex.
        >
        > Such a phenomenon appears usually in societies with very strict gender role
        > distinctions, especially ones where men and women don't often interact with
        > each other. The relative isolation of the male and female communities
        > results in effectively two partially separate linguistic groups, whose
        > lects start to diverge. The strict distinction in gender roles and
        > behaviours in the culture ensures that the divergence stays stable: the
        > different speech patterns become seen as part of the male or female
        > identity. And indeed, I read that in societies where such diglossia used to
        > be common and stable for centuries, a change in cultural behaviour in the
        > form of a loss of the traditional gender role distinctions will usually
        > result in a (quite rapid) loss of the male and female language
        > distinctions: the two dialects will merge again in a single form, although
        > some small differences may linger longer than others.
        > --
        > Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets.
        >
        > http://christophoronomicon.blogspot.com/
        > http://www.christophoronomicon.nl/
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