The Acoustic Properties Of Metrical Contrast



In the second and third chapters we described an investigation that had originally been set up as an inquiry into the acoustic characteristics of foot boundaries. At the end of the third chapter we were forced to conclude that foot boundaries could not be established in the acoustic registration of our material and that they could not be unanimously decided on in listening tasks either. It seemed that feet should be considered rotational devices, which might have a function in the wider context of a stanza. We decided to shift our attention to the problem of metrical contrast. There seems to be universal agreement that the syllable is the primitive unit of measurement and stress the parameter of contrast (see Crystal 1975:107).


Metrical Position Silent Reading Metrical Pattern Pitch Accent Lexical Stress 
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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1980

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