Virtual Space of English Consonants: Shorter Distance Produced by Japanese Learners of EnglishKaoru Tomita*
Faculty of Literature and Social Sciences, Yamagata University, 1-4-12 Kojirakawa-machi, Yamagata 990-8560, Japan
- *Corresponding Author:
- Kaoru Tomita
Faculty of Literature and Social Sciences
Yamagata 990-8560, Japan
Tel: (023) 628-4793
Fax: (023) 628-4793
E-mail: [email protected]
Received date: January 29, 2016; Accepted date: February 25, 2016; Published date: March 01, 2015
Citation: Tomita K (2016) Virtual Space of English Consonants: Shorter Distance Produced by Japanese Learners of English. J Phonet and Audiol 2:112.doi:10.4172/2471-9455.1000112
Copyright: © 2016 Tomita K. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
This study investigates how Japanese learners of English pronounce two consonants, /s/ and /S/, or /b/ and /v/, of English minimal-paired words whose corresponding words are English-based loanwords in Japanese and written in katakana. Frequency of spectral peak, duration, and intensity of these consonants produced by six Japanese learners of English and six native English speakers are measured with acoustic equipment. Among these phonetic features, significant differences in frequency of spectral peak between /s/ and /S/ are observed. This holds true for both native English speakers and Japanese learners of English. There are also significant differences in duration between /b/ and /v/, and intensity between /S/ and /s/, or /b/ and /v/. A hypothesis that distance between the values of these features for each paired consonants tends to be smaller for the Japanese learners of English than for the native English speakers is also verified. Implications for further research are briefly discussed.