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UM-CoEDL Zoom Seminar: Studying speech rate cross-linguistically, Frank Seifart, 14 Aug

Outreach, University of Melbourne

Date: 4 August 2020

Seminar: Studying speech rate cross-linguistically

Speaker:Frank Seifart, Leibniz-Zentrum Allgemeine Sprachwissenschaft

When: 14 Aug 2020, 4pm

Where: via zoom - contact for zoom link


In the first part of this talk, I will introduce DoReCo (, an initiative to create a multilingual reference corpus consisting of at least 10,000 words for at least 50 languages. DoReCo extracts from language documentation collections narrative texts that are already transcribed, translated into a major language, and morphologically analyzed. Within DoReCo, these data are being converted to a common file format and time-aligned with audio recordings at the phoneme level using the MAUS software. In the second part of this talk, I will present two ongoing cross-linguistic studies on a subset of this corpus: One study investigates phonetic word duration, in particular regarding lengthening in utterance-final position. Another study investigates asymmetries in pause probabilities before nouns vs. verbs and argues that these motivate typological asymmetries in the occurrence of prefixes.

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