- Prosodic focus in Vietnamese (2007)
- This paper reports on pilot work on the expression of Information Structure in Vietnamese and argues that Focus in Vietnamese is exclusively expressed prosodically: there are no specific focus markers, and the language uses phonology to express intonational emphasis in similar ways to languages like English or German. The exploratory data indicates that (i) focus is prosodically expressed while word order remains constant, (ii) listeners show good recoverability of the intended focus structure, and (iii) that there is a trading relationship between several phonetic parameters (duration, f0, amplitude) involved to signal prosodic (acoustic) emphasis.
- Structuring information through gesture and intonation (2005)
- Face-to-face communication is multimodal. In unscripted spoken discourse we can observe the interaction of several “semiotic layers”, modalities of information such as syntax, discourse structure, gesture, and intonation. We explore the role of gesture and intonation in structuring and aligning information in spoken discourse through a study of the co-occurrence of pitch accents and gestural apices. Metaphorical spatialization through gesture also plays a role in conveying the contextual relationships between the speaker, the government and other external forces in a naturally-occurring political speech setting.