Tue-1-10-5 Correlation between prosody and pragmatics: case study of discourse markers in French and English

Lou Lee(Université de Lorraine), Denis Jouvet(LORIA - INRIA), Katarina Bartkova(Atilf - Université de Lorraine), Yvon Keromnes(ATILF - Université de Lorraine) and Mathilde Dargnat(ATILF - Université de Lorraine)
Abstract: This paper investigates the prosodic characteristics of French and English discourse markers according to their pragmatic meaning in context. The study focusses on three French discourse markers (alors [‘so’], bon [‘well’], and donc [‘so’]) and three English markers (now, so, and well). Hundreds of occurrences of discourse markers were auto-matically extracted from French and English speech corpo-ra and manually annotated with pragmatic functions labels. The paper compares the prosodic characteristics of dis-course markers in different speech styles and in two lan-guages. The first comparison is carried out with respect to two different speech styles in French: spontaneous speech vs. prepared speech. The other comparison of the prosodic characteristics is conducted between two languages, French vs. English, on the prepared speech. Results show that some pragmatic functions of discourse markers bring about specific prosodic behaviour in terms of presence and posi-tion of pauses, and their F0 articulation in their immediate context. Moreover, similar pragmatic functions frequently share similar prosodic characteristics, even across lan-guages.
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