An understanding of phonetics - of the mechanisms of speech, of how the sounds of language are produced, and of how they can be analysed and classified - is an essential acquirement for all those who have to deal with language and languages either theoretically or practically. This book is an introduction to general phonetics which explores the entire range of human sounds, systematically covering all types of modification of speech (breath, voice, whisper, creak, etc.), articulation (the ways in which the air stream is finally modulated to generate specific types of sound), and prosodic features (stress, syllable, tone, intonation, etc.). In addition, there is a chapter on sound systems - the ways in which particular languages utilize and systematize the universal sound-producing potential of man. The entire range of phonetic categories is introduced in 124 'experiments', to be carried out in the readrer's own vocal tract. In this way, the reader acquires a personal awareness of the principles of phonetic analysis and classification rather than a merely intellectual knowledge of them.
This highly practical approach is informed throughout by recent research, particularly in the aerodynamics and acoustics of speech. NEW TO THE SECOND EDITION: New format and text design Updated usage of phonetic symobls in line with the most recent International Phonetic Alphabet Chart (1996) Revisions to 9 figures Text updated and clarified for ease of reading Revised further reading section with recent publications and more attention to aerodynamics, acoustics, and prosodies New references to the most important new publications