Chapter 5. The Neural Basis of Speech Rhythm Perception

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This chapter focuses on the neural basis of speech rhythm perception as opposed to production, largely due to the more elaborate understanding we have of the former. As with the behavioural research, the neural basis of speech rhythm has been investigated with different methodologies and looked at with different units of measurement. This chapter begins by describing current theories of how the human neural system represents temporality/acoustic time in a broad sense. The chapter goes on to explore contemporary views on neural representation of the suprasegmental parts of speech specifically. It looks at questions of hemispheric lateralization, the degree of overlap with non-linguistic rhythm processing and highlights research starting to tease apart specific aspects of speech rhythm such as intonation.


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