The Sounds of Language: An Introduction to Phonetics and Phonology

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9781405191043: The Sounds of Language: An Introduction to Phonetics and Phonology

The Sounds of Language is an introductory guide to the linguistic study of speech sounds, which provides uniquely balanced coverage of both phonology and phonetics.

  • Features exercises and problem sets, as well as supporting online resources at www.wiley.com/go/zsiga, including additional discussion questions and exercises, as well as links to further resources such as sound files, video files, and useful websites
  • Creates opportunities for students to practice data analysis and hypothesis testing
  • Integrates data on sociolinguistic variation, first language acquisition, and second language learning
  • Explores diverse topics ranging from the practical, such as how to make good digital recordings, make a palatogram, solve a phoneme/allophone problem, or read a spectrogram; to the theoretical, including the role of markedness in linguistic theory, the necessity of abstraction, features and formal notation, issues in speech perception as distinct from hearing, and modelling sociolinguistic and other variations
  • Organized specifically to fit the needs of undergraduate students of phonetics and phonology, and is structured in a way which enables instructors to use the text both for a single semester phonetics and phonology course or for a two-course sequence

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From the Back Cover:

The Sounds of Language is an introductory guide to the linguistic study of speech sounds, giving equal weight to both phonology and phonetics. Integrating these two disciplines allows students to appreciate the relationship of phonology and phonetics to each other, and to identify areas of overlap and mutual concern.

Theoretically grounded, the book explores the range of data that any theory must account for, and discusses important concepts and constructs that emerge from the data, such as the interacting roles of biology and cognition in creating sound inventories, perception as distinct from hearing, contrast, alternation, and markedness. Zsiga presents a critical overview of different approaches that have been used in tackling these issues, with opportunities for students to practice data analysis and hypothesis testing. Data on sociolinguistic variation, first language acquisition, and second language learning are integrated throughout the text, along with valuable exercises, problem sets, and online data and sound files. 

About the Author:

Elizabeth C. Zsiga is Professor in the Department of Linguistics at Georgetown University, where she has been a faculty member since 1994, teaching phonology and phonetics to both graduate and undergraduate students, with concentrations in theoretical, applied, and socio-linguistics. She has been published in numerous linguistics journals and books. Her research describes the sound systems of diverse languages including English, Igbo, Korean, Russian, Setswana, Serbian, and Thai.

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