Comparative study of English and German intonation
Fox, Anthony T. C.
Part One of this study considers the general framework for the description of intonation. After a brief survey (Chapter 1) of the development of the subject, Chapter 2 discusses the phonological characteristics of intonation and adopts a hierarchical prosodic structure based on that of Halliday but extended to include a higher-ranking unit, the paratone-group. The meaning of intonation is considered in Chapter 3, where it is concluded that this meaning is textual rather than grammatical, and is more general than existing treatments suggest. In Part Two this general framework is applied to English and German. Chapter 4 discusses methodological questions and describes the techniques used. Chapters 5 and 6 give a detailed analysis of the phonetic and phonological features of the tones and pretonics respectively. The systems are established on an auditory basis, but detailed phonetic specification is given in acoustic terms and experimental evidence is adduced from synthetic speech. Chapter 7 considers phonological characteristics of the peratone-group and establishes different kinds of structural relationship between tone-groups. The remaining three chapters are concerned with the meaning of intonation in the two languages: Chapter 8 with the role of the division into tone-groups and peratone-groups, Chapter 9 with the role of tonic placement and its analogue within the peratone-group, and Chapter 10 with the role of the tonal features themselves. In all cases the Intonational variables are shown to be independent of syntactic factors, though they interact with these factors in various ways, to some extent differently in the two languages because of differences of syntactic structure. It is also claimed that it is possible to give e more general characterisation of the meaning of tonal features than is found in the literature, and that, contrary to some opinions, there is no consistent relationship between English intonation and German modal particles.