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The production and perception of coda glottalisation in Australian English
thesisposted on 2022-03-28, 12:47 authored by Joshua James Penney
Previous research suggests that glottalisation is a cue to voiceless coda stops in Australian English and may be a recent change to the variety. In this thesis, we examine glottalisation in production and perception by Australian English speaker/listeners. We first consider coda glottalisation in the production of unstressed syllables, with the results confirming previous findings that glottalisation signals coda voicelessness and is more frequent in younger rather than older speakers, supporting suggestions of recent change. We then examine how perception of coda stop voicing is affected by glottalisation, finding that glottalisation facilitates increased perception of coda voicelessness, and that older and younger listeners perceive glottalisation similarly, despite differences in production. In a following study we show that listeners are perceptually sensitive to glottalisation, and do not merely perceive shorter modally voiced vowels when glottalisation is present. We examine glottalisation in production in different phrase positions to disentangle its effects from those of phrase final creaky voice, demonstrating that the effects of glottalisation do indeed occur independently of creaky voice. We also find that glottalisation is more frequent in pre-consonantal environments rather than pre-vocalic environments, and that younger speakers employ glottalisation more often than older speakers, particularly in pre-vocalic environments, indicating a possible progression of change Finally, we examine links between production and perception at the individual level. Although we find no consistent pattern between perception and production of glottalisation, we observe that a subset of individuals are progressive in both modalities and may be the drivers of change. This thesis thus contributes to our understanding of glottalisation, its use in production and perception, and its spread in Australian English. More generally, it advances our understanding of the cues that contribute to the phonological coda stop voicing contrast in English.