Volume 18, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0257-3784
  • E-ISSN: 2212-9731



This work examines Seoul Korean listeners’ perception of the five Korean sibilants: affricates /c′, c, ch/ and fricatives /s′, s/. Natural productions of the consonants were manipulated to vary orthogonally along several phonetic parameters relevant to the place/manner contrast ((denti)alveolar fricative vs. (palato)alveolar affricate) and the laryngeal contrast (fortis vs. lenis vs. aspirated). Of particular interest was listeners’ representation of /s/, whose laryngeal status is ambiguous. All manipulated parameters (baseline consonant and vowel affiliation, fundamental frequency at vowel onset, frication duration, and aspiration duration) influenced categorization, with consonant and vowel spectral information playing the primary role in distinguishing most sibilants. However, f0, a laryngeal cue, trumped place and manner cues in affricate vs. fricative classification, highlighting the increasing importance of f0 in Korean segmental phonology.

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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Korean; phonetic cue weighting; sibilants; speech perception
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