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Artistic Recitation of Metered Speech


thesis, an empirical study of enjambment, Tom Barney (1990) found ample empirical support for this assumption. This he did without having heard of my work before. I have adapted his techniques to a wide range of problems discussed in my 1977 book. My own way in this empirical research is to collect judgments from students, colleagues or my research associates whether the performer was successful in conveying, e.g., the conflicting aspects of an enjambment. And if possible, I try to compare alternative possiblities. Then I am looking for cues in the phonetic structures of the recordings, trying to find support for the intuitive judgments.
Barney relied in his research on a paper by Gerry Knowles (1991), in which he investigated the nature of tone-groups. Knowles distinguished internally defined prosodic patterns and external discontinuities at the tone-group boundaries. The former consist in some consistent Fused in ordinary speech; the latter are temporal
0pattern ("intonation pattern"--in plain English)
discontinuation (pause), pitch discontinuation (a sudden change in F0) and segmental discontinuation (that is, in normal speech the articulation of adjacent words is overlapping; when there is no overlap, it may count as discontinuity, even if there is no pause). Glottal stops in words beginning with a vowel, or word-final stop releases too may indicate segmental discontinuation (see below). This would be the most evasive type of discontinuity. "The important distinction that seems to be emerging is between boundaries with or without pauses". In what follows, I shall explore how these correlates of tone-group boundaries can be exploited as conflicting cues for the perceptual accommodation of the conflicting patterns of speech and versification.
One of the most conspicuous kinds of segmental discontinuity is the prolongation of a phoneme or of a syllable at the end of an utterance, announcing (very much like fermatain music) that the preceding unit has come to an end. Prolongation is, in fact, a double-edged phenomenon, that is, in different contexts it has different, sometimes even opposite, effects. From a perceptual point of view, prolongation indicates lack of forward movement. Therefore, when we have reason to suppose that it occurs at the end of some perceptual unit, it will be perceived as reinforcing the sense of rest;when it occurs in the middle of some forward movement, it is perceived as an arrest,arousing strong desire for change. While this is most useful in the kind of research I am engaged in, there is a big problem with this notion. There is no standard by which we can determine whether a phoneme or sequence of phonemes is longer or shorter than ought to be. Consequently, one must rely in this respect on one's intuitive judgment, or some roundabout reasoning about measurements and comparisons.

Expressive Functions of Vocal Style
For certain purposes, speakers may deviate from the "ordinary" articulation of phonetic cues: they may, for instance, overarticulate, underarticulate, or distort certain phonemes or phonetic cues. The Hungarian linguist Iván Fónagy is the greatest authority regarding the expressive functions of vocal style. Instead of getting entangled in elaborate expositions, I will briefly present the issue via one of Fónagy's illuminating examples.

According to the evidence of facial cinematography, Hungarian or French actresses pronounce /i/ with rounded lips when they