Emotions and prosodic structure

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Whereas for a long time many papers studying the correlates between emotions and intonation have been published, few, if any discuss the effects of speaker s emotions on the realizations of linguistic units, such as syllables, syntactic and prosodic structures, etc., as perceived and decoded by the listener. Research on intonation and emotions deals essentially with global characteristics of acoustic parameters, such as fundamental frequency, syllabic duration, rhythm and intensity. By contrast, this study deals specifically with the interactions between specific emotional states and the realization of a phonological phenomenon: the sentence’ s prosodic structure, denoted in French by melodic contours located on stressed syllables. Since the prosodic structure is the first kind of linguistic information decoded by the listener, the effect of emotions on the overall decoding process of the sentence is also discussed.


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