An Acoustic Phonetics of Shipibo-Conio (pano), an Endangered Amazonian Language: A New Approach to Documenting Linguistic Data

Author: Elías-Ulloa, José
This work documents the acoustic properties of Shipibo, and then relates them to phonological patterns. This type of work has previously only been available only for dominant tongues like English or Spanish, and therefore, sets an important precedent in the study and conservation of endangered languages.


“[T]he clarity with which Elias-Ulloa presents, explains and analyzes his results will enable future field researches to emulate his methodology, providing, as it does, a solid, pioneering model for the acoustic documentation of any language.” – Prof. José Camacho, Rutgers University

“. . . in addition to this book being welcomed by linguists interested in Amerindian and Amazonian languages, it will attract field linguists, phoneticians, and phonologists in general. The book is written in a clear and accessible way that can be used in the classroom environment as a showcase study in courses of research methods in linguistics.” – Prof. Seunghun Lee, Central Connecticut State University

“. . . an outstanding contribution to the study of phonetics and phonology of an endangered Amazonian language. Its topic and approach are unique. It is based on rigorous fieldwork and a thorough analysis and presentation of the material from a researcher who has had a long-standing interest and relationship with the Shipibo community in Peru and who has been researching and publishing on Shipibo phonetics and phonology for over a decade.” – Prof. Carolina Gonzalez, Florida State University

Table of Contents

Foreword by Jose Camacho
List of Abbreviations
1. Introduction
1.1 The Shipibos, the Ucayali and the Migration to Urban Centers
1.2 The Shipibo Speakers that Participated in the Study
1.3 Data Collection
1.3.1 The Interview Protocol
1.3.2 Recording Equipment and the Acoustic Analysis Program
1.4 Book Organization
2. Oral Vowels
2.1 Formants F1 and F2
2.2 Vowel Centralization in Non-Initial Unstressed Syllables
2.3 Duration in Short Vowels
2.4 Duration in Long Vowels
2.4.1 Illustrations of Long Vowels
2.5 Vowels in Contact with Epenthetic and Underlying Glottal Stops
2.6 The Behavior of Formants in Adjacent Vowels: Assimilation and Coalescence
2.7 Summary
3. Stops
3.1 Duration Measurements of Stops
3.2 Spectral Analysis of Stop Bursts
3.3 Stops and Formant Transitions
3.4 On the Phonetics of Labialization Triggered by [?]
3.4.1 An Acoustic Characterization of Labialization in Shipibo
3.5 Summary
4. Fricatives and Affricates
4.1 Voiceless Sibilant Fricatives
4.1.1 Spectral Analysis of Sibilants
4.1.2 Sibilants and Formant Transitions
4.2 The Laryngeal Fricative [h]
4.2.1 Spectral Analysis of [h]
4.3 Voiceless Affricates
4.3.1 Spectral Analysis of the Friction Phase of the Voiceless Affricates
4.3.2 Voiceless Affricates and Formant Transitions
4.4 The Voiced Bilabial Affricate [b?]
4.4.1 The Duration of [b?]
4.4.2 Spectral Analysis of the Friction Phase of the Bilabial Affricate [ b? ]
4.4.3 The Voiced Bilabial Affricate in After-Pause Contexts
4.4.4 [ b? ] and [b]: Variability among Speakers
4.5 The Voiced Retroflex Affricate [??]
4.5.1 Spectral Analysis of the Friction Phase of the Affricate [?? ]
4.5.2 Formant Transitions and the Voiced Retroflex Affricate [?? ]
4.6 Summary
5. Nasals
5.1 Nasal Consonants as Onsets
5.1.1 Spectral Analysis of Nasal Consonants
5.1.2 Nasals and Formant Transitions
5.2 Nasalized Vowels and Coda Nasal Segments
5.2.1 Duration of Nasalized Vowels and Nasal Codas
5.2.2 The Formant Structure of Nasalized Vowels The Behavior of F1 and Asymmetries between Stressed and Unstressed Nasal Vowels
5.3 On the Place of Articulation of Nasal Codas
5.4 Summary
6. Glides
6.1 On the Phonetics of the Vowels [i], [?] and the Glides [j], [w], [i?], [u?]
6.1.1 Outside Phonology: The Vowels /i/ and /?/ as Semi-Vowels
6.1.2 The Vowels /i/ and /?/ as Word-Initial Glides
6.1.3 The Vowels /i/ and /?/ as Semi-Consonants in Intervocalic Contexts
6.2 Summary
7. Syllables and the Durational Properties of Rhymes
7.1 Syllable Structure and its Durational Properties
7.1.1 Duration of Codas
7.1.2 Duration of Short Vowels in Closed Syllables
7.1.3 Duration of Syllable Rhymes
7.2 Complex Codas
7.3 Summary
8.1 Main Stress in Shipibo
8.1.1 Cases of Lexical Stress in Roots
8.1.2 Main Stress and Latent Segments
8.2 The F0 of High Pitch in Syllables with Main Stress
8.2.1 High Pitch Realized as Level
8.2.2 High Pitch Realized as Rising
8.2.3 High Pitch Realized as Falling
8.3 The F0 of Low Pitch in Unstressed Initial Syllables
8.3.1 Low Pitch in Unstressed Initial Syllable Realized as Level
8.3.2 Low Pitch in Unstressed Initial Syllable Realized as Falling
8.3.3 Low Pitch in Unstressed Initial Syllable Realized as Rising
8.4 Gender as a Conditioning Factor of the Pitch of Unstressed Second Syllables
8.5 Pitch, Duration, and Intensity as Cues for Main Stress
8.6 F0 outside the Main-Stress Window
8.6.1 F0 in Closed Syllables
8.7 F0 in Suffixes with Lexical Stress
8.8 F0 and the Position of Secondary Stresses in Compounds
8.8.1 The Realization of Secondary Stresses of Compounds
8.8.2 Stress Clashes and De-Accentuation 285 8.9 Summary 2
9. Outline of the Phonology of Shipibo
9.1 A Phonology of the Vowels of Shipibo
9.1.1 Featural Makeup of Vowels
9.1.2 Vowel Length An Alternative Analysis for Long Vowels
9.1.3 Changes in Vowel Duration Determined by the Linguistic Context Duration of Long Vowels and the Size of Words
9.2 A Phonology of the Consonants of Shipibo
9.2.1 Featural Makeup of Consonants
9.2.2 The Challenges of a Phonological Analysis of Shipibo Labialization
9.2.3 Latent Segments Latent Segments and the Stress Assignment Latent Segments Default Place of Articulation Dorsal Latent Segments The Point of Articulation of Root Final Nasals
9.2.4 Phonological Issues that Surround Nasals
9.3 The Interaction between Syllable and Stress
9.3.1 Syllable Structure
9.3.2 Main Stress
9.3.3 Secondary Stress
9.3.4 Cases of Lexical Stress
9.3.5 Clashes and the Preservation of Main Stress High Pitch in Compounds
9.3.6 Gender and the Acquisition of the Distribution of High Pitch
9.4 Summary
10. Conclusions