Towards a phonetically-rich account
of speech-sound → colour synaesthesia
This paper explores the contribution that phonetics can make to research into certain types of synaesthesia: those which have speech sounds as the ‘inducer’ or trigger for the synaesthetic experience, and colour as the ‘concurrent’ or triggered experience. These variants are under-researched relative to other variants. We first discuss the complex inter-relationship between speech sounds and graphemes as synaesthetic inducers, then review recent findings concerning the parameters of speech that can evoke impressions of colour. These findings suggest systematic relationships, but a more detailed phonetic approach is needed to better understand the mappings.