SOAS Research Online

A Free Database of the Latest Research by SOAS Academics and PhD Students

[skip to content]

Chang, C. B., Haynes, E. F., Yao, Y. and Rhodes, R. (2010) 'The phonetic space of phonological categories in heritage speakers of Mandarin.' In: Bane, Max, Bueno, J., Grano, T., Grotberg, A. and McNabb, Y., (eds.), Proceedings from the 44th Annual Meeting of the Chicago Linguistic Society: The Main Session. Chicago, IL: Chicago Linguistic Society, pp. 31-45.

[img] Text - Draft Version
Restricted to Repository staff only

Request a copy


In two experiments, we investigated the production of Mandarin and English by heritage speakers of Mandarin in comparison to native Mandarin speakers and late learners. In Experiment 1, speakers in all groups made an F2 distinction between Mandarin and English back vowels, with native Mandarin speakers' vowels in both languages having lower F2 values than those of heritage speakers and late learners. In addition, heritage speakers were found to achieve the greatest separation between similar vowel categories. In Experiment 2, few speakers made a VOT distinction between Mandarin unaspirated and English voiced; however, native Mandarin speakers and heritage speakers did distinguish Mandarin aspirated and English voiceless, both groups putting more distance between the two categories than late learners. Thus, we found that heritage speakers maintain not only language-internal contrasts, but also cross-linguistic contrasts, a result which likely stems from an acute approximation of phonetic norms that occurs during early exposure to both languages.

Item Type: Book Chapters
Keywords: phonetics, phonology, language acquisition, heritage speakers, bilingualism, Mandarin Chinese
SOAS Departments & Centres: Legacy Departments > Faculty of Languages and Cultures > Department of Linguistics
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
P Language and Literature > PE English
P Language and Literature > PI Oriental languages and literatures
P Language and Literature > PL Languages and literatures of Eastern Asia, Africa, Oceania
ISBN: 9780914203728
Copyright Statement: Copyright 2010 Chicago Linguistic Society. All rights reserved.
Date Deposited: 21 Nov 2014 16:40
Related URLs: http://lucian.u ... .edu/blogs/cls/ (Publisher URL)

Altmetric Data

There is no Altmetric data currently associated with this item.


Download activity - last 12 monthsShow export options
Downloads since deposit
6 month trend
6 month trend
Accesses by country - last 12 monthsShow export options
Accesses by referrer - last 12 monthsShow export options

Repository staff only

Edit Item Edit Item