<%BANNER%>

Tone Systems of Dimasa and Rabha

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0022754/00001

Material Information

Title: Tone Systems of Dimasa and Rabha A Phonetic and Phonological Study
Physical Description: 1 online resource (157 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Sarmah, Priyankoo
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2009

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: bodo, dimasa, northeast, phonetics, phonology, rabha, tibetoburman, tone, tonology
Linguistics -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Linguistics thesis, Ph.D.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: This study explores the tone systems of two languages spoken in the northeast part of India: Dimasa and Rabha. This study involves acoustic analysis of data from the two languages collected from extensive fieldwork. The focus of this study is to determine the lexical tonal inventory of Dimasa and Rabha and their assignment on various morphological domains. In the available literature on Dimasa and Rabha, there are multitudes of conflicting views about their tone systems and its functions. This study resolves these views and confirms that Dimasa and Rabha have three tones each in their tonal inventory namely, rising, mid-level and falling tones that can be assigned to any lexical word. It also confirms that only one tone can be assigned to each underived lexical word regardless of its syllable size. It is also concluded that in case of derived suffixed words, Dimasa retains the tone of the prefix and the suffix whereas Rabha retains the underlying tone of the suffix and assigns a default mid tone to the stem. This study also provides an optimality theoretical (OT) account of the tonal phenomena in Dimasa and Rabha.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Priyankoo Sarmah.
Thesis: Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Florida, 2009.
Local: Adviser: Wiltshire, Caroline R.
Local: Co-adviser: Wayland, Ratree.
Electronic Access: RESTRICTED TO UF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE UNTIL 2010-05-31

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2009
System ID: UFE0022754:00001

Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UFE0022754/00001

Material Information

Title: Tone Systems of Dimasa and Rabha A Phonetic and Phonological Study
Physical Description: 1 online resource (157 p.)
Language: english
Creator: Sarmah, Priyankoo
Publisher: University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: 2009

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords: bodo, dimasa, northeast, phonetics, phonology, rabha, tibetoburman, tone, tonology
Linguistics -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
Genre: Linguistics thesis, Ph.D.
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
born-digital   ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Notes

Abstract: This study explores the tone systems of two languages spoken in the northeast part of India: Dimasa and Rabha. This study involves acoustic analysis of data from the two languages collected from extensive fieldwork. The focus of this study is to determine the lexical tonal inventory of Dimasa and Rabha and their assignment on various morphological domains. In the available literature on Dimasa and Rabha, there are multitudes of conflicting views about their tone systems and its functions. This study resolves these views and confirms that Dimasa and Rabha have three tones each in their tonal inventory namely, rising, mid-level and falling tones that can be assigned to any lexical word. It also confirms that only one tone can be assigned to each underived lexical word regardless of its syllable size. It is also concluded that in case of derived suffixed words, Dimasa retains the tone of the prefix and the suffix whereas Rabha retains the underlying tone of the suffix and assigns a default mid tone to the stem. This study also provides an optimality theoretical (OT) account of the tonal phenomena in Dimasa and Rabha.
General Note: In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note: Includes vita.
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description: Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description: This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Statement of Responsibility: by Priyankoo Sarmah.
Thesis: Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Florida, 2009.
Local: Adviser: Wiltshire, Caroline R.
Local: Co-adviser: Wayland, Ratree.
Electronic Access: RESTRICTED TO UF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE UNTIL 2010-05-31

Record Information

Source Institution: UFRGP
Rights Management: Applicable rights reserved.
Classification: lcc - LD1780 2009
System ID: UFE0022754:00001


This item has the following downloads:


Full Text

PAGE 1

1 TONE SYSTEMS OF DIMASA AND RABHA: A PHONETIC AND PHONOLOGICAL STUDY By PRIYANKOO SARMAH A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2009

PAGE 2

2 2009 Priyankoo Sarmah

PAGE 3

3 To my parents and friends

PAGE 4

4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS The hardships and challenges encountered while writing this dissertation and while being in the PhD program are no way unlike anything experienced by other Ph.D. earners. However, what matters at the end of the day is the set of people who made things easier for me in the four years of my life as a Ph.D. student. My sincere gratitude goes to my advisor, Dr. Caroline Wiltshire, without whom I would not have even dreamt of going to another grad school to do a Ph.D. She has been a great mentor to me. Working with her for the dissertation and for several projects broadened my intellectual horizon and all the drawbacks in me and my research are purely due my own markedness constraint, *INTELLECTUAL. I am grateful to my co chair, Dr. Ratree Wayland. Her knowledge and sharpness made me se e phonetics with a new perspective. N ot much unlike the immortal Sherlock Holmes I could often hear her echo : One's ideas must be as broad as Nature if they are to interpret Nature. I am indebted to my committee member Dr. Andrea Pham for the time s he spent closely reading my dissertation draft and then meticulously commenting on it. Another committee member, Dr. Jimmy Harnsberger spent hours personally supervising the statistics and experimental parts of my dissertation. The teaching faculty at the linguistics program of the University of Florida has always been very kind to me. I will always remember the contribution of Dr. Fiona McLaughlin, Dr. Ann Wehmeyer, Dr. Edith Kaan, Dr. Jules Glieche, Dr. M.J. Hardman, Dr. Virginia LoCastro, Dr. Gary Miller, and Dr. Diana Boxer in broadening my understanding of linguistics and academia in general.

PAGE 5

5 Helping me overcome all the stressful times in my PhD program were my fellow lab rats: Dr. Mohammed Al Khaiiry, Dr. Bin Li, Dr. Bao Mingzhen, Chris Barkley, Dr. Andrea Dallas Linguistics has been fun fun and fun with all of them around. Outside Turlington, my home in Gainesville was Belles house and my family was Apple, Nan, Tony and many other Thai friends. They readily provided any academic or personal he lp I needed in Gainesville. My sincere gratitude goes to my Assamese friends in Gainesville who literally made me feel at home during various parts of my four years of stay in Gainesville Chandan Talukdar, Sakib R a hman Saikia, Siddrat Taufik Saikia, Rande ep Khaund, Ananya Bhuyan and Dr. Prabir Barooah thank you all. My heartiest thanks go to my study buddy Eva (Zheng Weihua) for her constant persuasions whenever she felt I am slowing down in my work I owe you big time! Thanks to Sean (Sangyeon Park) for the great company during the time of writing this dissertation. My heartiest thanks go to the other two members of the 2004 trio Jimmy and Mutsuo. Thanks to my first and close friend in Gainesville Jimmy (Huang Chun) for putting up with me all these years. Thanks Mutsuo, for never saying no to anything that I demanded! I would like to express my gratitude to a ll t he beautiful people in the city of Gainesville Florida who made my four yea rs in the city a memorable experience.

PAGE 6

6 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ...............................................................................................................4 LIST OF TABLES ...........................................................................................................................9 LIST OF FIGURES .......................................................................................................................11 ABSTRACT ...................................................................................................................................15 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ..................................................................................................................16 Research Questions .................................................................................................................16 Languages of the Present Study ..............................................................................................17 Th e Dimasa Language .....................................................................................................17 The Rabha Language .......................................................................................................20 Dimasa and Rabha Morphological Structures .................................................................21 The Current Study ...................................................................................................................23 Tonal Inventor y of Dimasa and Rabha ............................................................................24 Morphophonemics of Dimasa and Rabha .......................................................................24 Overview of Tone Languages .................................................................................................25 Tone Languages of the World .........................................................................................28 African Tone Languages .................................................................................................29 Asian Tone Languages ....................................................................................................30 Tones in Tibeto Burman Languages ......................................................................................33 Tibetan Languages ...........................................................................................................33 Assam Burmese ...............................................................................................................34 Structure of the S tudy .............................................................................................................36 2 METHODOLOGY .................................................................................................................37 Data Collection .......................................................................................................................37 Participants ......................................................................................................................37 Materials ..........................................................................................................................38 Recording ........................................................................................................................40 Data Analysis ..........................................................................................................................40 Segmentation of Speech ..................................................................................................40 Acoustic Analyses ...........................................................................................................41 Extracting nonnormalized pitch values ...................................................................41 Extracting normalize d pitch values ..........................................................................43 Statistical Analysis ..................................................................................................................43 Theoretical Framework ...........................................................................................................44

PAGE 7

7 3 TONES I N MONOSYLLABLES ..........................................................................................45 Dimasa Monosyllables ............................................................................................................45 Data Collection ................................................................................................................46 Acoustic Analysis ............................................................................................................47 Effect of Onse t and Coda on Pitch ..................................................................................52 Statistical Analyses ..........................................................................................................53 Normalization of Data .....................................................................................................55 Perception Test ................................................................................................................60 Rabha Monosyllables ..............................................................................................................61 Data Collection ................................................................................................................61 Acoustic Analysis ............................................................................................................62 Statistical Analysis ..........................................................................................................68 Discussion ...............................................................................................................................70 Dimasa Monosyllables ....................................................................................................73 Rabha Monosyllables ......................................................................................................74 4 TONES IN DISYLLABLES ..................................................................................................76 Dimasa Disyllables .................................................................................................................77 Acoustic Analy sis ............................................................................................................77 Statistical Analysis ..........................................................................................................81 Rabha Disyllables ...................................................................................................................84 Acoustic Analyses ...........................................................................................................84 Statistical Analyses ..........................................................................................................87 Discussion ...............................................................................................................................89 5 MORPHOPHONOLOGY ......................................................................................................90 Overview .................................................................................................................................90 Dimasa ....................................................................................................................................92 The ri suffix ...................................................................................................................92 The rao Suffix ...............................................................................................................98 Reduplication .................................................................................................................102 Rabha ....................................................................................................................................105 The kai Suffix ..............................................................................................................105 The dam Suffix ............................................................................................................108 The brok Suffix ............................................................................................................111 Discussion .............................................................................................................................113 6 OPTIMALITY THEORETICAL ACCOUNT OF DIMASA AND RABHA TONES ........115 Optimality Theory ................................................................................................................115 Optimality Theoretical Account of Tones ............................................................................117 Tones in Dimasa and Rabha .................................................................................................120 Lexical Tone Inventory in Dimasa and Rabha ..............................................................120 A Lexical Item Must be Specified with a Tone .............................................................124

PAGE 8

8 Optimality Theoretical Treatment of Dimasa Tones .....................................................127 Optimality Theoretical Treatment of Rabha Tones .......................................................131 Discussion .............................................................................................................................134 7 CONCLUSION .....................................................................................................................136 Tone Inventories ...................................................................................................................136 Tones in Monosyllables ........................................................................................................137 Tones in Disyllables .............................................................................................................139 General Tone Assignment Pattern ........................................................................................140 Tones in Derived Polysyllables ............................................................................................140 Implications from the Current Study ....................................................................................140 Future Directions ..................................................................................................................141 APPENDIX A DIMASA WORD LIST ........................................................................................................142 B RABHA WORD LIST ..........................................................................................................145 C STATISTICS CONDUCTED ON INDIVIUAL SPEAKERS .............................................147 D ADDITIONAL FIGURES AND TABLES ..........................................................................149 LIST OF REFERENCES .............................................................................................................152 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH .......................................................................................................157

PAGE 9

9 LIST OF TABLES page 11 Consonants in Dimasa ........................................................................................................19 12 Consonants in Rabha ..........................................................................................................21 13 Syllable structures of Dimasa ............................................................................................22 14 Syllable structures of Rabha ..............................................................................................23 15 Language categorized according to tonality ......................................................................28 16 Elaborate categorization of languages according their tonality .........................................29 17 Tonal systems .....................................................................................................................29 21 Languages and spoken areas/varieties in this study ...........................................................38 31 Effects of different consonant types on F0 ........................................................................53 32 Mean F0d for each tonal category .....................................................................................54 41 Set of disyllables ................................................................................................................77 42 Average TBU length in Dimasa syllables ..........................................................................80 51 Bonferroni test for F0d of the three syllables ....................................................................97 61 Ranking of constraints in optimality theory .....................................................................116 62 General constraint ranking for Dimasa ............................................................................126 63 Optimality theory tableaux for Dimasa ............................................................................128 64 Optimality theory tableaux demonstrating tone assignment in Dimasa ..........................131 65 Optimality theory tableaux of Rabha tone assignment ....................................................132 66 Optimality theory tableaux for Rabha derivations ...........................................................133 A 1 Dimasa words with English meanings .............................................................................142 B 1 Rabha words with English meanings ...............................................................................145 C 1 Comparison of F0d values for each speaker in Dimasa ...................................................148 C 2 Comparison of F0d values for each speaker in Rabha .....................................................148

PAGE 10

10 D 1 Bonferroni tests for average normalized tones with Dimasa tone types as factors .........149 D 2 Bonferroni tests for average normalized tones with Rabha tone types as factors ...........149 D 3 Results of an ANOVA test conducted on different groups of the F0 contour .................149 D 4 Results of a Bonferroni test comparing different groups on the F0 contour of Dimasa ..149 D 5 Results of one way ANOVA test on Dimasa tone types .................................................149 D 6 Results of Bonferroni post hoc test on Dimasa tone types ..............................................149 D 7 ANOVA test conducted on Dimasa normalized data ......................................................150 D 8 Bonferroni test conducted on Dimasa normal ized data ...................................................150 D 9 Oneway ANOVA results for Rabha tones ......................................................................150 D 10 Bonferroni test for three tone types in Rabha ..................................................................150 D 11 Bonferroni test on F0d of each syllable of /goron/ ..........................................................150 D 12 Bonferroni test on mean F0d of each syllable of /hath ai/ .................................................150

PAGE 11

11 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 11 The JingphoKonyak Bodo subfamily ...............................................................................18 12 Distribution of languages of the Bodo Garo family ..........................................................18 13 Vowels in Dimasa ..............................................................................................................20 14 Vowels in Rabha ................................................................................................................21 21 An example of segmentation of speech signals .................................................................41 22 Extraction of pitch points (P n) at every 2% of the total duration ......................................42 31 Map of Assam showing the areas of origin of the speakers in this study as ......................46 32 Pitch track for /zao/ by speaker PJ .....................................................................................48 33 Pitch track for /th u/ of speaker PJ .......................................................................................49 34 Pitch track for /kh u/ of speaker PJ ......................................................................................50 35 Pitch tracks for /bai/ produced by speaker BB ...................................................................50 36 Normalized average rising, mid, and falling tones in Dimasa ...........................................51 37 Normalized pitch track for /ri/ ...........................................................................................56 38 Normalized pitch track for /lai/ ..........................................................................................56 39 Normalized p itch track of the /t u/ syllable for all speakers ..............................................57 310 Normalized pitch track of / u/ syllables for all speakers ...................................................58 311 Average normalized values of the three tones in Dimasa ..................................................58 312 Means of F0d for nonnormalized pitch tracks with standard error bars ...........................59 313 Means of F0d for normalized pitch tracks with standard error bars ..................................59 314 Pitch track for /kh o/ f or female speakers ............................................................................63 315 Pitch Track for /kh o/ for male speakers ..............................................................................64 316 Normalized pitch track for /kho/ for all speakers of Rabha ...............................................64 317 Pitch track for /bia/ for female speakers ............................................................................65

PAGE 12

12 318 Pitch track for /bia/ for male speakers ...............................................................................65 319 Normalized pitch track for /bia/ for all speakers ...............................................................66 320 Pitch track for /rai/ for male speakers ................................................................................67 321 Pitch track for /rai/ for female speakers .............................................................................68 322 Normalized pitch track of /rai/ for all speakers .................................................................68 323 Mean F0d for nonnormalized Rabha tones with standard error bars ...............................69 324 Normalized pitch contours of the three tones in Rabha .....................................................70 41 Pitch tracks of the first syllable / g o/ for / g oron/ as produced by subject BT ....................78 42 Pitch tracks for the second syllable /ron/ of /goron/ as produced by speaker BT ..............79 43 Pitch track on the first syllable /ha/of /hath ai/ as produced by speaker BT .......................79 44 Pitch tracks of the second syllable /thai/of /hath ai/ as produced by speaker BT ................80 45 Normalized pitch tracks of the /goron/ disyllables ............................................................82 46 Normalized pitch tracks of the /hath ai/ disyllables ............................................................83 47 Pitch tracks of the first syllable /ka/ of /kana/ as produced by speaker AR .......................85 48 Pitch tracks of the second syllable /na/ of /kana/ as produced by speaker AR ..................85 49 Initial syllable /ri/ of /rima/ as produced by speaker AR ...................................................86 410 Final syllable /ma/ of /rima/ as produced by speaker AR ..................................................87 411 Normalized pitch tracks for /kana/ .....................................................................................87 412 Normalized pitch tracks for /rima/ .....................................................................................88 51 Average normalized pitch track of the pitch of / u/ syllables produced in underived conditions by all speakers ..................................................................................................93 52 Average normalized pitch track of / u/ syllables produced with the suffix ri by all spe akers ..............................................................................................................................94 53 Pitch track of /kh ai/ syllables in underived conditions .......................................................95 54 Pitch track of /kh ai/ syllables with causative ri ................................................................96

PAGE 13

13 55 Averaged and normalized pitch track of / g oron/ in underived condition produced by all speakers .........................................................................................................................96 56 Averaged and normalized /goron/ set of syllables with the suffix ri as produced by all speakers .........................................................................................................................97 57 Pitch track of /ri/ give ......................................................................................................98 58 Normalized pitch track of /baba/ father produced in uninflected condition ...................99 59 Normalized pith track of /baba/ affixed with p lural marker rao ....................................100 510 Normalized pitch track of /miya/ male disyllable in uninflected environment .............101 511 Normalized pitch track of /miya/ yesterday in uninflected environment ......................101 512 Normalized pitch track of /miya/ male assigned plural suffix rao ..............................102 513 Pitch track of /kh ase/ small produced individually in a sentence frame ........................104 514 Pitch track of reduplicated /kh ase/ ....................................................................................104 515 Pitch track of /reng/ ..........................................................................................................106 516 Pitch track of /rung/ .........................................................................................................107 517 Pitch track of derived /rengkai/ ........................................................................................107 518 Pitch track of derived /rungkai/ ........................................................................................107 519 Pitch track of derived /tongkai/ ........................................................................................108 520 Pitch track of /phar/ ..........................................................................................................109 521 Pitch track of derived /phardam/ ......................................................................................109 522 Pitch track of underived /trung/ .......................................................................................110 523 Pitch track of derived /trungdam/ ....................................................................................110 524 Pitch track of /phar/ ..........................................................................................................111 525 Pitch track of derived /pharbrok/ .....................................................................................112 526 Pitch track of /chi/ ............................................................................................................112 527 Pitch track of derived /chibrok/ ........................................................................................112 61 ...............................................................121

PAGE 14

14 62 you (hon., plural) ..........................................................122 71 Three phonological tones of Dimasa ...............................................................................137 72 Three phonological tones of Rabha .................................................................................138 73 Comparison between Dimasa and Rabha F0d .................................................................138 D 1 Results of the Dimasa perception test categorized by correctness ..................................151

PAGE 15

15 Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy TONE SYSTEMS OF DIMASA AND RABHA: A PHONETIC AND PHONOLOGICAL STUDY By Priyankoo Sarmah May 2009 Chair: Caroline R Wiltshire Cochair: Ratree P Wayland Major: Linguistics This study explores the tone systems of two languages spoken in the north e ast part of India : Dimasa and Rabha. This study involves acoustic analysis of data from the two languages collected from extensive fieldwork. The focus of this study is to determine the lexical tonal inventory of Dimasa and Rabha and the assign ment of tones in various morphological domains. In the available literature on Dimasa an d Rabha, there are multitudes of conflicting views about their tone systems and its functions. This study resolves these views and confirms that Dimasa and Rabha have three tones each in their tonal inventory namely, rising, mid level and falling tones that can be assigned to any lexical word It also confirms that only one tone can be assigned to each underived lexical word regardless of its syllable size. It is also concluded that i n case of derived suffixed words, Dimasa retains the tone of both the root and the suffix whereas Rabha retains only the tone of the suffix assigning a default mid tone to the root This study also provides an optimality theoretical (OT) account of the tonal phenomena in Dimasa and Rabha.

PAGE 16

16 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Research Questions This study aims at investigating the tonal phonetics and phonology of two TibetoBurman languages spoken in the NorthEastern part of India namely, Dimasa and Rabha. It provides a definitive phonetic account of the inventory of tones in the two languages and their assignment in underived monosyllable s underived disyllables and derived polysyllables. Also, this study aims at providing an optimality theoretical account of the tonal phenomena in the two languages in this study. More specifically, this study aims at providing answers to the following research questions: How many lexical tones do Dimasa and Rabha have? How are lexical tones assigned in underived monosyllables underived disyllables and deri ved polysyllables ? Do the related languages follow the tone assignment pattern as reported in Sarmah (2004) for Bodo? It is worth mentioning at this point that s tudies on tones in these two languages are very limited and largely inconclusive. Moreover until now, there has been no acoustic investigation into the tone systems of Dimasa and Rabha. Even though Singha (2001) describes the tone systems of Dimasa and Joseph and Burling (2001) and Joseph and Burling (2007) describe the tone systems of Rabha, their findings do not correspond to the findings of Resource Centre for Indian Languages Technology Solutions ( RCILTS ) Guwahati1 1 Retrieved from http://www.iitg.ernet.in/rcilts/dimasa.htm on March 20th, 2008 for Dimasa and Basumatary (2004) for Rabha. Moreover, almost next to nothing is known about the tone assignment pattern of the se two languages in derivations.

PAGE 17

17 Hence, this study is des igned to explore Dimasa and Rabha tone systems and arrive at definitive conclusions about the tone systems and tone assignment in the two languages. The next section provides an overview of the two languages in this study, including the consonantal and vowel inventory of the two languages. It also provides a brief overview of the syllable structures in Dimasa and Rabha. The following sections discuss the goals of the current study and give an overvie w on tone languages and their distribution around the world. The latter section specifically talks about the observed tonal phenomena in the Tibeto Burman languages and the final section gives an overview of the organization of this dissertation. Languages of the Present Study In the current study, two languages of the Assam Burmese family of languages are studied (Figure 1 1) In alternative accounts, this language family is also described as Kamarupan (Matisoff 1991, 1999, 2000) and JingphoKonyak Bodo.2The Dimasa Language In this study, the latter classification of the language family is adopted as it is more widely accepted as a standard classification On the other hand Matisoff (1991) s classification has faced severe criticism resulting in a defense of the Kamrupan fami ly in Matisoff (1999). In Figure 1 2, the geographical distribution of the languages of interest in this study is demonstrated. In the subsections to follow, descriptions of Dimasa and Rabha are provided. Dimasa is a language spoken by an ethnically minority community in Assam, India. Dimasa is spoken by 88,543 speakers as a first language .3Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati, Assam, Dimasa has two lexical tones According to the RCILTS website of 4 namely, high and level unmarked tone .5 2 Source: http://www.ethnologue.com retrieved on June 10, 2008 3 Source: http://www.censusindia.net/, as retrieved on June 10, 2008

PAGE 18

18 Figure 1 1. The JingphoKonyak Bodo subfamily Figure 12. Distribution of l anguages of the Bodo Garo f amily 4 Source: http://www.iitg.ernet.in/rcilts/dimasa.htm as retrieved on June 10, 2008 5 It is not clear what they categorize as level unmarked tone. The website provides no description or data related to their claim. JingphoLuish KonyakBodoGaro Jingpho Jingpho Singpho Taman Luish Jingpho Konyak Bodo BodoGaro Bodo Garo Koch Kado Konyak Garo Megam Bodo Deori Dimasa Tiwa Riang Kok Borok Kachari Atong Koch Rabha Ruga Chang Konyak Nocte Khiamniungan Wancho Phom Tase Tutsa

PAGE 19

19 Singha (2001) sheds some light on Dimasa phonology and morphology and, regarding tones in Dimasa he claims that there are three register tones :6Table 11. Consonants in Dimasa high, low, and mid/level, with the mid/level tone being an unmarked tone. Singha (2001) claims that the high and low tones in Dimasa are assigned rising and falling pitch contours respectively in their phonetic reali zation s A preliminary investigation o f tones of the Dimasa language (Sarmah and Wiltshire, in press ) has led to the conclusion that the language has three phonological tones namely, high, mid and low. However, the high and the low tones in the language ha ve phonetically rising and falling pitch contours. The mid tone is a register tone. Sarmah and Wiltshire ( in press ) also describe the phonetic properties associated with the production of the three tones in Dimasa. According to Singha (2001) Dimasa has 6 v owels and 16 consonants. However, this list does not contain the diphthongs that exist in the Dimasa language. The consonantal inventory of Dimasa is described in Singha (2001) at length and is represented in this work ( Table 1 1) Singha (2001) also descr ibes the vowels of Dimasa ( Figure 1 3). These inventories shows that t he segmental inventory of Dimasa is very similar to the segmental inventory of other languages in the BodoGaro family such as Bodo, Tiwa and Rabha (Joseph and Burling, 2001) Bilabial Dental Alveolar Palatal Velar Uvular Glottal Plosive Nasal Fricative Tap Approximant Lateral Approximant 6 The term register is used by Si ngha (2003) to refer to level tones.

PAGE 20

20 Figure 1 3. Vowels in Dimasa The Rabha Language Rabha is spoken by about 139,365 people in Assam and Meghalaya7According to Basumatary (2004) Rabha has 20 consonants (Table 1 2) and 6 vowels (Figure 1.4). Similar to Dimasa, the segmental inventory of Rabha differs in the existence of the voiced counterparts of the plosive sounds. and considered to be a language of an ethnic minority community. The Rabha segmental phonological inventory is very similar to the other language s in the BodoGaro subfamily. As Joseph and Burling ( 2007 ) notes, Rabha is closer to Tiwa in terms of consonant inventory. According to Joseph and Burling ( 2007), l ike most of the languages of the Bodo Garo family, Rabha also has two tones. T hese two tones are high and less clearly falling than a falling tone which they accept as a low tone. In an extensive st udy Basumatary (2004) comp ares Bodo and Rabha language and comes to the conclusion that Rabha has two phonological tones. 7 Source: http://www.censusindia.net, as retrieved on June 10, 2008

PAGE 21

21 Table 1 2. Consonants in Rabha Bilabial Dental Alveolar Palatal Velar Uvular Glottal Plosive Nasal Fricative Tap Approximant Lateral Approximant Figure 1 4. Vowels in Rabha Dimasa and Rabha Morphological Structures Singha (2001) also discusses the morphology of Dimasa to some extent. He mentions that Dimasa nouns can have gender, number and case as affixes. Even though the occurrence of prefixes is limited to numerals and pronouns, suf fixes are allowed for various purposes. As far as the prefixes are concerned, the classifier ma can be optionally attached to a cardinal number. Multiplicative numerals are also formed by adding a prefix to the cardinal numbers. Demonstrative pronouns are formed by adding prefixes to the third person pronoun. However,

PAGE 22

22 suffixation is allowed for both nouns and verbs for a wide variety of usage such as pluralization, causativization etc. As in other Tibeto Burman languages, Dimasa uses many verbal nouns produced by adding the suffix ba to a verb. Similarly, adverbs can be also derived from adjectives using the suffixes sisi and lolo Pluralization is achieved by using the plural suffixes rao and buthu. Apart from these Dimasa also allows echo formation wh ere the echo word changes the vowel or the consonant or both. Echo words in Dimasa add the meaning etcetera or similar to to the base form. In case of reduplication, Singha (2001) points out that Dimasa has two types of reduplication a) class changing and b) class maintaining. The class changing reduplications necessarily change a word to an adverb. Dimasa allows a variety of syllable structures. As this work discusses the monosyllables and disyllables of Dimasa, it is pertinent to discuss the syllable inventory of Dimasa in underived monosyllables and disyllables. According to S ingha (2001), Dimasa allows a wide variety of Table 1 3. Syllable structures of D imasa syllable types in monosyllables and disyllables (Table 1 3) Monosyllables Disyllables VC, CV CVC, CVV, CVC, CVV, CCV VCV VCCV, VCVV, CVCV, VCVC CVCCV, CVVCV, CVCVV, CVCVC, CVCVC, CVCVC CVCCVV, CVVCCV, CCVCCV, CVCCVV, CVCCVC, CVVCVC CCVV, CVVC, CCVC According to Basumatary (2004), Rabha can adopt to the use of affixes for derivation and inflection. Like Dimasa, Rabha also demonstrates more number of suffixes than prefixes. Rabha uses a variety of nominative suffixes to create nouns from verbs. Similarly, pluralization is also achieved by adding suffixes like bizan or ta in Rabha. One of the few instances where prefixes are used is while causativizing a verb. Rabha uses reduplication to pluralize nouns. In case of interrogative sentences, the pronoun can also be reduplicated to refer to a group of

PAGE 23

23 people. Again, adjectives are reduplicat ed in order to add a plural sense to the noun that the adjectives modify. Not much is known about the syllable structure in Rabha. However, Basumatary (2004) provides an inventory of syllable types for underived monosyllables and disyllable s in Rabha ( Tabl e 1.4) Table 1 4. Syllable structures of Rabha Monosyllables Disyllables V, VV, CV, VC CVV, CVC CCVV VCC CVCV CVCVC CVCCVC The Current Study The current study aims to conduct an exhaustive investigation on the tones and their behaviors in the two languages. As mentioned earlier in this chapter, there is no acoustic study on the tones of Dimasa and Rabha available. Moreover, there is no agreement among the available literature on the number types and beh avior of tones in the two languages. Hence, the current study aims filling these gaps in the literature This study also aims at shedding light on tone assignment in underived monosyllables, underived disyllable and derived polysyllables in Dimasa and Rabh a. This study involves systematic collection of data using digital devices, acoustic and statistical analyses and an optimality theoretical account based on the results obtained from the acoustic analyses ( C hapter 2 for more details). In the available literature on tones, the generalizations about tonal phenomena across languages are derived mainly from data collected from the African, East Asian and Southeast Asian l anguages whereas Tibeto Burman languages have hardly found a place in tone studies. It is expected that the proposed study will help in filling an existing gap in the literature on tone studies. Hence, the objective of this study is to conduct a typological investigation into the tone

PAGE 24

24 assignment pattern of two languages of the BodoGaro subfam ily of the TibetoBurman language family namely, Dimasa and Rabha. In the sections to follow, specific objectives of this study are discussed. Tonal Inventory of Dimasa and Rabha According to Benedict (1972) and Mazaudon (1985) Proto TibetoBurman has a tonal inventory of only two tones and most of the languages of the family mirror this in terms of their tonal inventories In this research it will be investigated if the daughter languages of the BodoGaro subfamily demonstrate evidence for the claims of Benedict (1972) and Mazaudon (1985). It will also be investigated if the third tone (the mid tone) found in many TibetoBurman languages is a n unmarked tone which surfaces only when a tone bearing unit is not assigned any tone due to phonological restricti ons prevailing in the languages. The motivation for this part of our investigation primarily arises due to the familiarity with the availab le literature on the BodoGaro languages In case of Bodo it is claimed that it has only two lexical tones ( e.g. Burl ing 1959, Joseph and Burling 2001, Sarmah 2004) as opposed to the previous view s that they have a larger tonal inventory with Bhattacharya ( 1977) claiming that it has four tones and Halvorsrud (1959) claiming Bodo to be a three tone system In this study phonetic analysis is used to identify the pattern and types of tones for phonological analysis. With the help of instrumental analysis designed to capture the pitch pattern of the data from the languages, it is expected that a definitive answer about the n umber and phonetic and phonological nature of tones in the language in the present study can be achieved. Morphophonemics of Dimasa and Rabha In this study the interaction between tone and morphology i s also investigated. M orphotonological interactions have been noticed in Bodo as demonstrated in Bhattacharya

PAGE 25

25 (1977) and Sarmah (2004). Similarly, an interaction in morphological derivations in terms of tones is expected in Dimasa and Rabha. The present study is an investigation in the domain of tone language s. Hence, the following s ection provides a general introduction to tone languages and provides an overview of tones in world languages. This section also talks about the character istics of the tone languages of the t wo major regions of the world: Asia and Africa, where most of the tone languages of the world can be found. Overview of Tone Languages A pertinent question to ask at this point is, What is a tone language? Yip (2002) regards languages as Tone Languages if the pitch of the word results in the change of the meaning of the word. The basis of tone is the pitch of the sound. Pitch is the perceived fundamental frequency or the rate of vibration of the vocal folds ( measured by the number of c ycles per second Hz) of a sound. Hyman (2001) gave a pla usible definition of a tone language: A language with tone is one in which an indication of pitch enters into the lexical realiza tion of at least some morphemes ( pp. 13671380). H ymans definition is quite ambiguous as it does not draw a distinction between a tone and a stress language. H owever, while defining tone languages, Yip mentions that it is only a thin line that separates stress languages from tone languages She tries to make this distinction clearer by noting that in stress languages pitch does not stay constant on the lexical items whereas in tone languages it does. Moreover in a stress language stress is not lexically marked. If the pitch of a word can change the meani ng of a word, that language is called a tone language. The pitch not only changes the nuances of the words but also changes the core meaning of the words.

PAGE 26

26 Pike (1948) says that the tone languages should have lexically significant, contrastive but relative pitch on each syllable. However, some scholars do not support this view. Welmer (1959), Schachter and Fromkin (1968) and Woo (1969) describe tones in the lines of classical gene rative phonology, which regards tones a s a property of segments. In autosegmental phonology the same stand is assumed w here the tone bearing unit is considered as an element on the segmental tier capable of being associated with an element on the tonal tier (Goldsmith, 1976) Sapir (19 25) and Trubetzkoy (1939) try to as sociate tones with the mora. Their argument was based on the relationship between the tonal complexity and the vowel length or the syllable quality. There is a possibility of a relationship between tones and the vocalic nucleus of the syllable and the cons onants of the relative margin. Tones can normally be realized on voiced segments. Theref ore the TBU is most of the time a voiced vowel. However the possibility of a relationship between a tone and a consonant is also not ruled out. To substantiate Yip (2002)s definition of tones resulting from pitch change one can look at an example from Cantonese, where the syllable [yau] can be produced in six different pitches, which has six different meanings as shown in Example 11. [yau] (1 1) high level w orry high rising paint (noun) mid level thin low level again very low level oil low rising have (Yip, 2002) However, i n some languages, tonal distinctions in polysyllabic words are obtained by contrastive positioning of restricted tone s in different syllables. I n Dagaare, a Gur language spoken in Ghana, a disyllabic word can be specified H(igh) and L(ow) as in Example 12.

PAGE 27

27 (1 2) | | L H | | H L The study of tonal languages achieved its due recognition with the publishing of Pike (1948). In the 20 (Yip, 2002) In case of a disyllabic entry [yuori], a tonal distinction is found as in Example 13. LH [yuori] penis (1 3) HL [yuori] name (Yip, 2002) In many other languages, the positioning of the lexical tone does not matter much. It may appear anywhere in the lexical entry. The exact location of the tone may change according to the morphological or phonological environment. th centur y the arrival of western missionaries trained in linguistic s, in the far flung places of Asia and Africa, exposed western philologists to a large database of tonal languages. Even though 67% of worlds languages are tone languages (Yip, 2002) not much has been known about many tone languages and the behaviors of tones in many languages. This deficiency in typology has prevented linguists from offering a general theory of tones and their functions in the worlds languages. Even a general tone representation al system is also far from being achieved For example, Gruber (1964) and Wang (1967) consider contour tones to be distinguished from one another as single units Woo (1969) argues that all contour tones should be analyzed into levels. She says that as con tour tones are long, therefore, the syllables bearing them must be bimoraic or trimoraic. Similarly, Leben (1973) argues that owing to the limitations in the number of suprasegmental tonal melodies, contour tones should be analyzed as tonal melodies. Leben (1978) strengthens this argument by showing that Mende contour tones are

PAGE 28

28 actually sequences of H(igh) and L(ow) tone features. Similarly, Goldsmith (1976 a, b) accommodated the H and L tone feat ures on a separate tonal tier. Other scholars however did not support the view that contour tones should be decomposed into levels. However, later Yip (2002) argues that contour tones do need to be represented as combinations of level tones. T his multiplicity of views can only be resolved if typological data empirically supports a particular view over another. Therefore, this study aims at adding data that can bear on these issues. Tone Languages of the World Asia and Africa are home to most of the tone languages of the world. Considering the typological evidence ga thered from tone languages, Woo (1969) suggests that languages can be categorized in terms of their prosodic qualities. Towards that goal, Woo suggests that languages be divided into the following groups according to their tonality: A. Lexical tone languages, where the pitch contour of a lexical formative is specified for pitch on every vowel. B. Tone harmony languages, where a diacritic is associated with each lexical formative and where the diacritic is later interpreted to give the pitch contour of the formative. C. Non tone languages, where the lexicon contains no prosodic features associated in any way with formatives. Woo combines Type A and Type B as tone languages, distinct from Type C. Considering the arguments put forth by the se scholars langua ges can be categorized in a system where the feature [Tone] refers to lexical tones and [Accent] refers to relative emphasis given to a particular syllable in a word by varying duration, intensity or pitch (Table 1 5) Table 1 5. Language categorized according to to nality [Tone] [Accent] Examples + + Mandarin, Zulu, Swedish + Cantonese, Hausa + English, Spanish, Japanese French

PAGE 29

29 Table 1 6. Elaborate categorization of languages according their tonality Language Type Tone Accent Accent Type Examples I. Non Accentual tone languages YES NO --Cantonese, Huasa II. Accentual Tone languages YES YES Stress Mandarin, Zulu III. Tonal Accent Languages YES YES Stress Swedish IV. Pitch Accent languages NO YES Pitch Japanese V. Stress accent languages NO YES Stress English, Spanish VI. Non accentual languages NO NO --French Table 1 7. Tonal systems Free Tone Restricted Tone, including tone pitch accent Chinese Mende Ewe Japanese Tonga Haya Metrical Accent System StressAccent Metrical pitch accent English Vedic Sanskrit Latin Ancient Greek Modern Greek Malayalam Chinese African Tone Languages African languages are complex in their tone systems. The m ost striking feature of African tone languages is their tone mobility. It is seen that the tone in a particular morpheme spreads to an adjacent morphological unit both inside and outside the morpheme boundary. This feature is true of Bantu, a major language of this family Tonal phenomenon like spreading, deletion and metatheses are also found in the African languages. Some also term these languages as accentual languages considering the almost predictable tonal distribution o f these languages. Another fact or that creates a problem for the labeling of these languages is their limited tone inventory. In many cases these languages have only one marked tone (H), phonologically

PAGE 30

30 speaking. The L tone is considered to be a default tone and it associates its elf with any toneless syllable. However there are languages in Africa which have up to five tones (e.g. Gimira, Wobe, Dan and Ashuku) Though contour tones are rare in African tone languages the Khoisan languages do have contour tones. The distribution of contour tones in most of the languages is quite predictable. Usually in African languages the word final TBUs or TBUs with heavy syllables are assigned contour tones. The contour tones in African languages can be analyzed as sequences of two level tones. However there are cases where a prime contour tone is noticed. In some of the languages even a preference for a contour tone over a level tone is noticed. The TBUs in African languages can both be syllables and moras. Tonal complexity is further increased in Afri can languages by phenomena such as downstep or downdrift In many African languages, a high tone appearing after a low tone is lower than the high tone preceding the low tone. This phenomenon is called downstep or downdrift. In many languages upstep is als o found, where a low tone following a high tone is higher than the one preceding the high tone. Also interaction of segmental and tonal features is also widely observed. Consonantal effects are observed in the lowering of tones in African tone languages. A set of voiced consonants usually lower the tones. Polarity is another feature of the African languages that sets them apart from the tone languages of the other parts of the world. In this case the tones of the affixes are the opposite of the tone of the root. Asian Tone Languages Asian languages are rich in tones. The Chinese language family, Tibeto Burman, Tai Kadai, Vi etnamese, the Papuan languages have languages with rich tone inventories. However the Indo Ary an languages of the Indian subcontinent do not have tone languages (with the sure exception of Punjabi and a possible exception of Rajasthani). Even the AustroAsiatic languages

PAGE 31

31 are main ly nontonal (except Vietnamese, some dialects of Khmer and possibly G aro ). In comparison to the African languages, the Asian languages have a larger tone inventory with contrasts between level and contour tones. The Asian languages have a simple syllabic structure like the African languages; however unlike the African languages they have a simple morphology. The fairly small set of syllables in these languages is enlarged by incorporating tonal contrasts. For example Mandarin has 406 segmentally distinct syllables; however it increases to 1256 whe n tonal contrasts are included (Yip, 2002) In some cases, as in African languages, Asian languages too show consonantal interference in the realization of a tone. Experiments show that in many languages the pitch of vowels following voiceless consonant s is higher than following a voiced consonant (Hombert et al, 1979) These sorts of characteristics do not have any spec ific phonological significance, b ut they may become significant in a number of ways. There may be a limitation of certain tones after certain consonant sounds. Ladefoged (1964) describes the Ewe tones, which have lower tones in syllables beginning with certain voiced consonants. Accounts showing closer links between tone and initial consonants can be found in the historical developments in the South East Asian tone lang uages. They result in the extension of the tone system and even the development of tones in originally nontone languages. Tonogenesis in Vietnamese is shown by Haudricourt (1954, 1961). He claims that Vietnamese was actually a non tone language, like its other counterparts of the MonKhmer language group. The tonal distinction in Vietnamese arose due to the loss of a few consonantal distinctions. Three tones developed due to the loss of the final consonants and each of the tones split into two through the loss of initial voiced/voiceless distinction. Other languages also show similar developments. In Sgaw Karen, a two tone system split into four tone system high and low level tones, high and low falling tones. The high tone developed after

PAGE 32

32 voiceless and glo ttalized plosives and voiceless or aspirated nasals and laterals, whereas the low tones developed after voiced plosives, voiced laterals and voiced nasals. The phenomenon is not as simple as that. According to Henderson ( 1979), in Bwe Karen the twoway spl it appears to be a three way contrast due to the loss of voicing (high, mid and low) According to Haudicourt (1961), in Tung and Mak another level of difficulty is noticed. There is a three way split that occurs following the merger of voiced, aspirated, and glottalized initial consonants. Thus the three tones in Tung become nine. But again similar processes did not result in that sort of complex systems in languages such as Thai or Lao. In most of the case s the loss of the initial consonant distinction results in the twoway split in the tone system. As the Asian languages are primarily monosyllabic, they form a lot of compound words. The t onal patterns of these compound words are of considerable interest to tonologists as they demonstrate the interaction between morphology and phonology in these languages In Asian languages when morphemes are combined into words or phrases one or more of the following might happen: A. No tonal change to either syllable B. Limited tonal changes when certain tones are adjacent to each other. C. Loss or major reduction of tonal contrasts on all noninitial syllables. D. Loss or major reduction of tonal contrasts on all nonfinal syllables. E. Spreading of tones to a toneless syllable. F. Chain shifting of each tone to another tone in the system, usually on the non final syllable The Ti beto Burman subfamily of languages is a part of the SinoTibetan language family. However, unlike the Asian tone systems the TibetoBurman tone systems are com paratively simpler as far as number of tones and complex phenomenon like tone sandhi is concerned. The following s ection gives an overview of the features of the TibetoBurman tone languages.

PAGE 33

33 Tones in Tibeto Burman Languages The Tibeto Burman (TB) subgroup of languages falls within the Sino Tibetan language family. Lhasa Tibetan, Burmese, Jingpho and Bai are some of the languages which fall within the TB group. However, according to the Linguistic Survey of India (1903) even TB languages can be divided int o three categories: Tibetan, Himalayan and Assam Burmese. The Tibetan languages may or may not be tonal. Tibetan Languages Aba Tibetan, for example is a non tonal language, while Lhasa Tibetan is a tonal language (Yip, 2002). Historically, tones ar ose in these languages due to the devoicing of the initial voiced obstruents. D eletion or debabuccalization of the final codas also produce contours in these languages. In polysyllabic words the tones of the first syllable is spread to the other syllables. T he underlying contour tone is divided into two distinct tones on a longer domain. However if the final syllable is long then t he contour tone survives. Hence Example 14 is not possible however, Example 15 is. (1 4) L H (1 5) L H (Yip, 2002) Jingpho, another TibetoBurman language, has a contrastive voice quality co existing with contrastive tones. It has three tones and each can occur with either tense or lax voiced quality in the onset position. Lax is more breathy and it initially induces a low tone in vowels. Hence in Jingpho we see that pa t stop up and pat with a whip make a minimal pair in terms of voice

PAGE 34

34 quality even though they are assigned the same tone, i.e. 55. Here in this example denotes a tense voiced quality. Historically these breathy voiced words actually started with a voiced consonant. Compared to Jingpho, Burmese shows a contrastive phenomenon. In Burmese, the tonal and segmental distinctions do not overlap. In other words lexical items are either distinguished in terms of tones or voice quality, but not both at the same time. Apart from a HIGH and a LOW tone, Burmese has a creaky and a co nstri cted glottis type of phonation. Some researchers (Bradley 1982, Watkins 2000) are of the view that Burmese tones are not at all phonological and they want to categorize Burmese as a register language. Their argument for categorizing Burmese as a non t onal language comes from their claim that tones in Burmese are utterly predictable by the vowels and phonation used. On the other hand there is a school of thought that Burmese is a tone language. Green (1994) argues that the H and L tones, creaki ness, constricted glottis are all laryngeal features of Burmese and each syllable in Burmese can have one and only one of these features. Though the feature constricted glottis moves to the coda position of a syllable, the other features are always constant in the assigned syllables. Assam Burmese Most of the languages of the North East India are classified i n the Assam Bu rmese group of languages Again there are both tonal and nontonal languages in this subgroup. For example, languages like Missing and Deori are non tonal, w hereas languages like Ao, Angami and Bodo are tonal. This are a shows interesting tone phenomena as it is an area where the Tibeto Burman and IndoAryan language speaking populations overlap. This effect can be seen from the fact that as one mo ves from west to east in this are a tonal complexity increases, in terms of number of tones and their assignment pattern. The westernmost language in this area, Bodo has only two tones (Sarmah 2004, Joseph and Burling 2001) whereas one of the languages in the eastern

PAGE 35

35 boundaries of this area, Mizo, has as many as four tones (Lalrindikii 19 89, Chhangte 1986, 1993) Bodo, a language spoken in Assam of the North East India, has two tones, high and l ow. It also has a default m id tone which is not lexical. Every word is assigned with one and only one lexical tone in this language. The rightmost syllable is assigned with the lexical tone and the rest of the syllables in the word are assigned with a default mid tone. Even in derivations, Bodo tries to maintain the same tonal assignment pattern (Sarmah, 2004) Garo, another language closely associated with Bodo, does not have any phonological tone. Comparing certain similar lexical items of the two languages reveal that in Garo a glottal stop is usually associ ated with a high pitch. The h igh pitch does not otherwise surface in the language. Considering the high pitch association with glottal stops in Garo, Weidert (1987) wanted to associate the high tone in Bodo with the occurrence of a glottal stop. But later research revealed that the surfacing of glottal stops in Bodo is idiosyncratic and cannot be associated with the emergence of any particular tone (Sarmah, 2004) Ao, another language spoken in this area has three tones. Temsunungsang and Sanyal (2004) argu e that the Chungli dialect of Ao has only level tones (High, Low and Mid) and it does not have any contour tones as previously claimed by Gowda (1975). A further claim that Temsunungsang wants to advance (personal correspondence) is that the tonal comple xity is higher in Ao ( Chungli ) verbs than in the nouns ; as verbs in this language are minimally bimoraic and the TBU is not a syllable but a mora. Like A o, languages like Sema, Angami and Thaadou languages of this are a have three tones each (Shreedhar 19 76, Ravindran 1974, Thirumalai 1972) However further detailed tonological studies on these languages are yet to be conducted.

PAGE 36

36 The Manipuri or Meiteilon language of this area shares some features with many other South East Asian languages in terms of the interaction between voice quality and tones. Primary study has revealed that tonal inventory of this language can be classified as rising, falling and level (Chelliah 1997) St ructure of the Study The chapters of t his dissertation are organized in the fol lowing manner. Chapter 2 describes the methodology adopted in the dissertation. It also gives an overview of the data collection process and the rationale behind the selection of the language varieties and speakers of Dimasa and Rabha in this study. Chapte r 3 reports the findings on the assignment of tones in the monosyllabic entries in Dimasa and Rabha. It also discusses the segmental effects on pitch and possible methodology to minimize such effects in analyzing pitch. Chapter 4 discusses the assignment o f tones in disyllables in Dimasa and Rabha. Chapter 5 discusses the tone assignment in the derived polysyllables in Dimasa and Rabha. Chapter 6 provides an optimality theoretical account of the tonal phenomena in Dimasa and Rabha. Finally, Chapter 7 concludes the findings of the current study and discusses the scope for further research in the area.

PAGE 37

37 CHAPTER 2 METHODOLOGY This chapter describes the methodology of collecting data, digitizing them and acoustically and statistically analyzing them. In the first s ection of this chapter the methods of data collection are described and the following s ection describes the methodology adopted in the acoustic analysis of the speech data. The third s ection describes the statistical methodolo gy adopted and the final s ection discusses the theoretical framework adopted in this study. Data Collection In the current study, data was collected with the aim of capturing the basic tonal inventory of the languages under research. Differences in phonetic pitch will form the basis of classification of different tones in this study. The pitch on the rhyme in a syllable will be regarded as the indicator of tone in the languages under study. In order to avoid phonetic variations arising due to speaker and gender difference, the data will be normalized before conducting analyses on them. Participants Before recruiting participants for the production test, I determined the geographical areas from which the participants should come. A real features and language variations complicate the choice of data collection area and participants. Bhattacharya (1977) and Basumatary (2004) observe that Bodo and Rabha both have distinct varieties and hence, tonal variation in these varietie s is not ruled out. Therefore, data is collected from the varieties considered as standard by the speakers of the languages in this study. Geographical position of these varieties is also taken into consideration as it is undesirable that the speakers of these languages come into a high degree of contact with other languages of the geographical area. These considerations resulted in collecting data from the areas carefully chosen to avoid any type of impure data ( Table 2 1)

PAGE 38

38 After determining the areas an d varieties of the two languages, 8 native speakers ( 4 male and 4 female) from each language area and variety were recruited for the production experiment. The age of the participants was maintained between 18 and 40 years in order to make sure that Table 2 1. Languages and spoken a reas/ varieties in this study Language Areas/Varieties Dimasa The Hasaw variety spoken in the Cachar area. The Cachar area is geographically isolated making them less vulnerable to influences of other languages. Rabha The Rangdani variety spoken in the Tilapara area as this variety is considered to be the standard variety of Rabha (Basumatary 2004). Data was collected from the Tilapara as this area is geographically isolated ensuring minimal influence of a second langua ge. they speak the synchronic variety of the language. Moreover, it also makes sure that the participants do not have any vocal physiological anomaly arising due to underage or old age. The average age of the participants was 28 years at the time of data collection. Their educational background varied from elementary school to under graduate degree. None of them reported any history of problem s in heari ng or listening impairment. Each session of data collection lasted from 30 to 60 minutes and the participants were compensated with 200 Indian Rupees (approximately $4). Materials This study required that the participants read a list of segmentally homophonic words of their respective languages, with the meanings written along the words. The participants were asked to produce the words with appropriate tones in order to pronounce the semantic differences among the group of segmentally homophonous words clearly. The participants were required to produce the words within a sentence frame where the target word was situated in the sentence medial position. This ensured that the intonational interference on the target words w as uniform and hence predictable. More over, using the same sentence frame also ensured that the target

PAGE 39

39 word was not influenced by differing segmental properties of the preceding and the following words. The participants were asked to repeat each word four times. However, only the first three i terations were admitted for analysis. This was done to avoid the possibility of the appearance of listing intonations in the F0 of the target words. In most cases the participants had enough reading ability to read the list of the words given to them. Howe ver, in some cases the experimenter had to prompt them with the meaning of the word and provide cues leading to the production of the target lexical items and tones. The lists of words were constructed with the aim of capturing the tonal inventories of the languages and the morphotonology of the languages. The word lists consisted of both CV and CVC type of syllables .8The lists were constructed using previous literature and substantial inputs from the native speakers of the languages in this study. For Dimasa a Dimasa speaker initially identified various segmentally homophonous words with three different tones and produced them for the investigator. A word list was constructed using the words provided by the native speaker with supposed tonal contrasts Later, the speaker provided the investigator with a copy of the Anglo Dimasa dictionary (Dundas 1908) which was used to identify mo re segmentally homophonous words which are potential distinct t one carriers to be added to the word list For Rabha an initial set of data was constructed using Basumatary (2005) which has a large vocabulary of both Bodo and Rabha with the tones marked on the words. Later, during the field trip to the Rabha speaking As many types of initial consonants as possible were included so that consonantal effects on pitch can be determined from the collected da ta. For morphotonological analysis a set of data for each language was cons tructed having various suffixes so that t one assignment on suffixes in their phonetic forms can be determined. 8 According to S ingha (2004), Dimasa allows VC, CV, CVC, CVV, CVC, CVV, CCV, CCV V, CVVC and CCVC syllable types in monosyllables.

PAGE 40

40 villages, a native speaker confirmed the tonal contrasts on the list of words created by the investigator. Additionally, the native speaker also provided four sets of segmentally homophonous words that differed in terms of pitch from each other. Recording All the recordings in this study were conducted in the field in the quietest possible environments. Data was recorded on a Marantz PMD660 solid state recorder. Audio signals were captured using an AudioTechnica AT4041 handheld microphone The microphone was held about 25mm away from the participants mouth. The experimenter listened to the speech being recorded, in real time, so that optimal audio quality could be assured. Special care was tak en to avoid direct turbulent airflow to the microphone. The Marantz PMD660 recorder stored audio data to a compact flash card with a 48 KHz sampling frequency (equal to a DAT recorder). After each session, participants data was transferred from the compact flash card to a portable PC using a USB cable. Data Analysis Segmentation of Speech Both wide band spectrograms and waveform displays were used to segment the recorded speech in this study. Initially, each iteration of the target word was separated and saved as an individual sound file. Afterwards, each individual sound file was segmented with the intention of isolating the tone bearing units from the rest of the speech signal. This was done by visually locating the point of initiation (P i ) and the point of termination (P t ) of the fundamental frequency or the pitch of the syllables in the target words. The time indices of P t and P d were written on a corresponding PRAAT Textgrid file. This file makes

PAGE 41

41 Figure 2 1. An example of s egmentation of s peech s i gnals it easier to extract an array of information from the sound files (viz. duration, intensity, F0 etc) in the course of analysis ( Figure 2 1). Acoustic Analyses PRAAT 5.0.26 (Boersma and Weenink, 2007) was used to conduct both manual and automatic acoustic analysis on the speech data. All the measurements were obtained using various scripts written by the author for PRAAT. Extracting n on normalized p itch values Initially, in the time domain from P i to P t the total duration (P d) of the pitch signal was extracted using a script. Subsequently, the pitch contour was extracted with a pitch floor of 75 Hz and pitch ceiling of 600 Hz with a default time step of 100 milliseconds The extracted pitch contour was subjected to further ana lyses as described in the following paragraph. Average intensity (INT) of the time domain from P i to P t was extracted with minimum pitch being 100 Hz and time step of 100ms. Target and Pitch Offset (P t ) Target Onset Pitch Onset (P i )

PAGE 42

42 Using the same script, pitch was extracted from the pitch contour at every 2% (P n) of P d or the total duration of the target (Figure 2 2). Also, using a 100 ms time step, average pitch (F0) of the pitch contour was also calculated. The values of duration, average pitch, average intensity, pitch on every 2% etc. were written to a spreads heet by the script. However, it was noticed in Sarmah and Wiltshire (in press) that consonantal effects are prominent in Dimasa into 20% from the onset of the pitch contour .9 Similarly, the final 20% of a pitch contour also showed significant influence of the following consonant. Hence, in order to avoid consonantal influences, the initial 20% and the final 20% of the pitch contour were not considered for further statistical analysis. The P n values were plotted as a line graph to observe the direction of t he pitch contours so that they can be categorized into separate tonal categories such as level (high, mid or low) or contour (rising and falling). Figure 2 2. Extraction of pitch points (P n) at every 2% of the t otal duration 9 Please see Section 3.1.2 for discussion on this. Pitch Value Part considered for statistical analyses

PAGE 43

43 Extracting n ormalized p itch values The extracted non normalized data showed a large significant difference of fundamental frequency among the male and female speakers, especially in case of the Rabha language. On average the Rabha male speakers average fundamental frequency was almost 150 Hz lower than the female speakers. Hence, to av oid between speaker differences, the z score normalization (Disner 1980, Rose 1987, Rose 1991, Ishihara 1999 etc.) procedure was adopted. Rose (1991) reports this method to be superior in normalizing fundamental frequency. The z score procedure adopted in this study is NP n= (F0i x)/SD, where NP n is the normalized z score of a sampling point F0i is the sampling point, x is the average F0 of all sampling points and SD is the standard deviation of the average of all the sampling points. A s the PRAAT program can automatically calculate the standard deviation (SD) and the average F0 of the sampling points a PRAAT script was written in a way so t hat it can automatically obtain the z score values ( NP n) and collate them to a spreadsheet. Statistical Analysis A descriptive statistic al analysi s of F0 d was conducted for this study using ANOVA and Bonferroni tests. F0 d is the difference between the 39th point (78%) and the 11th point (22%)10 10 As mentioned in the previous section the initial 20% and the final 20% of the pitch track were not included for analysis due to possible consonantal perturbation. of an extracted pitch track that indicates the direction of the pitch contour. As both Dimasa and Rabha have contour tones, it would not have been suitable to compare the average values of pitch contours. In other wor ds, considering a case where one of the languages has both a rising and a falling tone, both falling or rising in the same degree, the average value of the pitch would not show any significant differences, even though in terms of direction of fall and rise there are two different tones. Hence, to address this issue, it was decided that not the average F0 but the

PAGE 44

44 F0 d of each of the iteration s will be compared. The ANOVA test was conducted to see if there were any significant differences between the acoustically visible tone groups. Similarly, a Bonferroni post hoc test was conducted to see if the tone groups are significantly different from each other in terms of their F0d values. Theoretical Framework In providing a theoretical analysis of the languages in this study, an Optimality Theory (OT) framework is applied (Prince and Smolensky 1993, McCarthy and Prince 1993) It has been noticed that some morphophonological phenomena in tone languages can be better explained with the help of OT (McCarthy and Prince 1994, Yip 2002) Economy and simplicity are two main reasons for using OT for theoretical analysis of the languages. It is expected that both Rabha and Dimasa tonal phenomena can be explained by the same set of tonal constraints varying only in their rank ing. Further, t his analysis may be extended to other languages of the BodoGaro subfamily to capture the tonal correspondence among them.

PAGE 45

45 CHAPTER 3 TONES IN MONOSYLLABL ES This chapter describes the tones and tone assignment in monosyllables of the Dimasa and Rabha languages. Even though there has been considerable interest in the languages of the Bodo Garo subfamily, not much is available on tones of these two languages except Joseph and Burling (2001), Joseph and Burling (2007), Singh a (2001), Basumatary (2004) and Sarmah and Wiltshire ( in press ). Apart from Sarmah and Wiltshire ( in press ) for Dimasa, there is no instrumental study of these two languages available. Hence, in this chapter our goal is to determine the tonal inventories of the two languages and provide a description of tone assignment in monosyllables with the help of instrumental acoustic data. It is argued in this chapter that both Dimasa and Rabha demonstrate three way phonological tonal distinctions. In both languages a rising, falling and mid level tones appear to be the three phonological tones. In the latter parts of this chapter the claims are supported by statistical analys es on the acoustic data to demonstrate that in the two languages change over a pitch contour is the pri mary cue for discriminating tones. Hence, direction of pitch is more important than average pitch in categorizing tones. Dimasa Monosyllables The earliest known grammatical work on Dimasa (Dundas 1908) does not comment on tones and tonal phenomena at all. Singha (2001) sheds some light on Dimasa phonology and morphology and, regarding its tones, he claims that there are three register tones :11 11 The term register is used by Singha (2003) to refer to level tones. high, low, and mid/level, with the mid/level tone an unmarked tone. From the 13 examples of words with con trastin g tones that Singha (2001) provides, it is noticed that every Dimasa syllable must be assigned one of the three tones. In Singha (2001) this also holds true for disyllables. However,

PAGE 46

46 according to online resources on Dimasa, available at RCILTS, IIT Guwahat i ,12Data Collection Dimasa has only two t ones: high and unmarked level. Neither Singha nor the RCILTS website provides any further description of how the unmarked tone operates, nor do they offer an acoustic phonetic description of any of the tones. As mentioned before, the first goal is determine the number of tones, describe their phonetic realization in Dimasa, and test the analyses by conducting statistical analyses on the acoustic data. For Dimasa, eight Dimasa speakers, 4 male and 4 female, were reco rded reading a list (see A ppendix A ) of target words in a sentence frame. All the speakers were between 20 and 25 years old at the time of data collection and spoke Dimasa as their first language. In addition to Dimasa, the participants also speak Assamese, Hindi and English. Among the four varieties of Dimasa namely Demra, Dijua, Hasaw and Hawar all speakers spoke the Hasaw variety spoken primarily in the North Cachar hills area, in and around Haflong (see Figure 31 ). Fig ure 3 1. Map of Assa m showing the areas of origin of the speakers in this study as 12 This information is retrieved from http://www.iitg.ernet.in/rcilts/dimasa.htm on March 20th, 2008; however, RCILTS does not confirm the source of this piece of information.

PAGE 47

47 The target words were a list of segmentally homophonous words, constructed using data from a native speaker of Dimasa. The wordlist was re examined using Dundas (1908) where the words appeared sans their tonal specifications. Their order in the list was randomized, and they were produced in a sentence frame, as in Example 3 1.13 angR X thiFbaF Acoustic Analysis (3 1) I target say -PST.1 I said X A sentence frame is required in near natural production of target words. If the speakers are to produce the target words in a bare word list, there is a possibility that the target words induce e ffects on the pitch contour due to listing intonation, initiation and termination of word production. The rationale behind choosing the sentence frame in Example 3 1 is t wo fold. Firstly, the final syllable of the pre target part of the sentence frame is a sonorant and it is unlikely that it affect s the pitch of the following target word. The post target part of the sentence frame begins with a stop consonant. The stopped part of the consonant makes segmentation easy and reduces the possibility of any antic ipatory affect on the pitch of the preceding target word. Secondly, the sentence frame is very colloquial as far as its usage is concerned and hence, it is expected that the speakers will not find the sentence frame unnatural and thus affecting the natural production of the target word. Each sentence was repeated four times by the speakers, but only the first three iterations were included in the analysis to avoid a listing effect, which might affect the intonation and thus the pitch. The set of target words read by the speakers included segmentally homophonous pairs, some of which are listed in Example 3 2 without any tone markings (see Appendix A). The first task was 13 The superscripted R and F denote a rising and a falling tone respectively on the preceding and the following syllables.

PAGE 48

48 to determine which of these words were distinguished by distinct tones : zao to puncture zao to row zao to winnow (3 2) khu to serve khu to dig khu face thu deep thu sleep thu spit P itch was calculated at 50 points across the duration of each TBU (every 2%) for each speaker The values were averaged across the three iterations of each speaker individually. Data from all the speakers were averaged. The averaged values were plotted on a graph using a spreadsheet to reconstruct the pitch track. The plotted pitch tracks revealed that f or some pa irs or triplets, the pitch tracks were identical, indicating that they are likely pronounced with the same tone. However, several pairs or triplets showed distinct pitch tracks revealing a potential three way co ntrast in Dimasa tones The / zao/ and / th u/ ( Figure 3 2 and Figure 3 3) sets of syllables were identified as potential carrier of three distinct tones in Dimasa. Fig ure 32. Pitch track for /zao/ by speaker PJ 75 100 125 150 175 200 puncture row winnow

PAGE 49

49 Figure 33. Pitch track for /thu/ of speaker PJ T here are three distinct pitch leve ls observed on the plotted graph of F0 in terms of the direction of the pitch tracks in Dimasa (Figures 3 2 and 33) However, in Dimasa a segmentally homophonous word pair, despite of having three way semantic distinction does not necessarily imply that it would also have three distinct tones. Results from this production test shows that some segmentally homophonous triplets are realized with three distinct pitch contours, whereas some triplets are not. For example, the /kh u/ set of words have three way s emantic distinctions, whereas two of the meanings can be mapped to a single tone group (Figure 3 4). Hence, the lexical items for face and serve in Dimasa are not only segmentally homophonous, but also homophonous in terms of their underlying tonal represe ntations. The set of /bai/ words in Dimasa further supported the claims about the three tonal distinctions in Dimasa. The segmentally homophonic /bai/ words have six distinct meanings .Their pitch tracks were plotted on a graph that showed three distinct pa tterns of tones pitches (Figure 3 5). 75 100 125 150 175 200 deep sleep spit

PAGE 50

50 Figure 34. Pitch track for /kh u/ of speaker PJ Figure 35. Pitch tracks for /bai/ produced by speaker BB 75 100 125 150 175 200 dig face serve 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 CROSS ORDER DANCE FILTER BREAK SPIN

PAGE 51

51 Acoustic analyses reveal that t he words for cross, dance and break clearly show a rising pi tch (Figure 3 5) On the other hand the word for order follows a level pitch contour. However, the words for filter and spin show a falling pitch contour. T he 53 monosyllables of Dimasa were categorized into three tonal categories namely rising, mid and fall ing, after visually examining their pitch contours. The normalized pitch contours of each tonal category were averaged and plotted on a graph ( Figure 36) However, it is noticed in the sections to follow that syllables with the onsets / / and / / have their effect throughout the pitch contour resulting in an allotone for the rising tone in Dimasa that phonetically surface as a tone w ith a high level contour (Figure 36). T he allotone of the rising tone is shown as R ( ). Fig ure 36. Normalized ave rage rising mid, and falling tones in Dimasa Ignoring the first 20% of the TBU, the rising tone in Dimasa shows a rising contour, the falling tone shows a falling contour while the mid tone stays relatively level. Thus speakers of Dimasa have a set of thr ee lexical tones that are distinct in terms of contour. 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 222% 24% 26% 28% 30% 32% 34% 36% 38% 40% 42% 44% 46% 48% 50% 52% 54% 56% 58% 60% 62% 64% 66% 68% 70% 72% 74% 76% 78% F M R R (sh, th)

PAGE 52

52 Effect of Onset and Coda on P itch O nset consonant effects on F0 are well attested in the literature (Hombert et al 1979, Xu 2001, 2003). In this study the consonantal effect of the onsets on the following pitch contour is also investigated. The primary aim here is to see how far into the duration of a following pitch contour do the consonantal effects permeate. In order to do that, we conducted a visual examination of the F0 contours following various types of consonants in Dimasa. It was confirmed by visual examination that the effects are primarily seen within the first 20% of the pitch contour. Therefore, pitch contours of the mid level tone in Dimasa in various onset contexts were collected The pitch contour was divided into five parts from the point of initiation of the F0 till the point of termination. Average F0 of e ach part of the pitch contour was statistically compared with the following part to see if they differed from each other significantly. Hence, the average F0 of the group 0% 20% was compared with the average F0 of the following group of 22% 40% and so on. The methodology used here followed the one described in Coupe (2003). An ANOVA was conducted on the data and was supplemented by a Bonferroni post hoc test The one way ANOVA test showed that the average pitch of the five groups interacted significantly [ F (4, 2200) = 4.16, p < 0. 05] and subsequent Bonferroni post hoc test s confirmed th at only the first 20% of the pitch contour of a midlevel tone differs significantly from the s econd 20% of the pitch contour ( p < 0.005 ) ( Appendix D, Table D 3, Table D 4) However, the other groups of the pitch contours did not show any statistical significance in terms of their average pitch. Hence, i t can be concluded that this significant difference between the 020% group and 2240% group occurs due to the consonantal affects perturbed into the F0. A subsequent univariate ANOVA test confirmed tha t the voiced and voiceless consonants vary significantly in terms of their effect on the F0. Similarly sonorants, obstruents and fricatives

PAGE 53

53 also have different effects on the F0. The results of this ANOVA univariate test are summarized ( Table 31 ) Table 3 1. Effects of different consonant types on F0 Mean Difference Significance Voiceless Voiced 37 0 .000 Fricatives Laterals 39 0 .000 Fricatives Stops 6 0 .06 Stops Laterals 45 0 .000 It is demonstrate d that a voiceless consonant induces higher pitch into the F0 than the voiced consonant. Similarly both fricatives and stops induce significantly higher pitch into the F0 than the laterals. Even though stops induce slightly higher pitch than the fricatives, this difference is not statistically significant. From the discussion above it can be safely concluded that throughout the initial 20% of the F0, effects of the onset consonants are significant enough and therefore that the initial 20% may not be relevant while trying to arrive at the phonological representation of a tone. Sarmah and Wiltshire (2006) came to similar conclusions about Mizo, regarding onset effects on the F0. Hence, in the current study the initial 20% of the pitch contour will be ignored f or statistical tests. Statistical Analyses The first goal of the statistical analyses is to see if the difference between the three tonal categories suggested by the visual inspection of spectrographs are significantly different or not. In order to confir m such interactions a one way ANOVA is usually preferred. However, as two of the three Dimasa tones have a falling and rising contours ANOVA test s that compare the average pitch values may not be fully reliable Even though a rising tone and a falling ton e differ significantly in terms of the direction of the contour, it is possible that the average pitches of the two slopes are very similar. Hence, in this study the difference (F0d) between the 39th point

PAGE 54

54 (78%) and the 11thTable 3 2. Mean F0d for each tonal cat egory point (22%) was calculated for each token, so that the directional characteristics of the contour tones are captured. The F0d is expected to be of positive value in case of a rising tone, negative for a falling tone and near zero for a register tone. A s expected mean F0d values are cor respond to the tonal categories in Dimasa where the rising tone has an F0d value in positive numbers the falling tone has an F0d value in negative numbers and the mid tone has an F0d value that is near 0 (Table3 2) Group Mean F0d Rising 16.77 Mid level 1. 38 Falling 20 68 Further a one way ANOVA with a Bonferroni post hoc test was conducted to see if the F0d values differed significantly according to the tonal categories. The ANOVA test confirmed that the three tone types are significantly different from one another [ F (2, 1070) = 701.98, p <0.05]. A subsequent Bonferroni post hoc test confirmed that all the three tone groups are significantly different from each other in terms of their F0d values ( Bonferroni adjusted p <0.017). The results of the ANOVA test are presented in Tab le D 5 and the results of the Bonferroni test are presented in Table D 6 of Appendix D T he results of an ANOVA test where F0d is the dependent variable and tone type is the independent variable demonstrate that the Dimasa tone types are significantly different from each other. Hence, it can be concluded that the three tones in Dimasa the r ising the mid level and the falling tones do not interact with each other. This lack of interaction between tone types and co rresponding F0d is also evident in case of individual speakers. The results of the statistical tests conducted on individual speakers where tone types is the factor and F0d is the dependent variable, are reported in Appendix C of this

PAGE 55

55 dissertation. The res ults in Appendix C shows that each individual Dimasa speaker produces three distinct categories of tones and each category is significantly different from the other. Normalization of Data In order to avoid differences between individual pitch ranges of speakers and further to avoid differences among the tokens produced by each speaker, each pitch track derived from each speaker was normalized. The pitch tracks were normalized by means of their z scores (see C hapter 2). After normalizing the data, the der ived values were plotted on a graph to demonstrate the tonal categories each word belongs to sans speaker effects, listing effects and consonantal effects. T he normalized pitch tracks for /ri/ and /lai/ syllables demonstrate two of the three tone types in Dimasa14 namely, the rising and the falling tone s (Figure 3 7 and 3 8) T he /ri/ and /lai/ for cloth and page respectively, have rising pitch contour s and the /ri/ and /lai/ for give and easy respectively, have falling pitch contours (Figure 3 7 and 3 8) However for the /thu/ and / u/ set of syllables the rising tones in the words for /th 14 These two types of onsets were chosen as they are known not to affect the pitch of the following TBU. u/ as in spit and for / u/ as in beat occur as a high level tone ( Figures 3 9 and 3 10 ) Similar representations of the rising tone are noticed in all the syllables that have / / and /t / as onsets. Hence, we conclude that the higher resonance frequency of the / / and /t / type of onsets embody their high frequencies on the following pitch track, resulting in a high level pitch contour for the ri sing tones. The rising tone with a high, level pitch contour is hence regarded as an allophonic variant of the rising tone in Dimasa, a variation that has been phonologized in the language. Therefore, it is also imperative that syllables which have / / and /t / as onsets be

PAGE 56

56 Figure 37. Normalized p i tch t rack for /ri/ Fig ure 38. Normalized pitch t rack for /lai/ 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 222% 24% 26% 28% 30% 32% 34% 36% 38% 40% 42% 44% 46% 48% 50% 52% 54% 56% 58% 60% 62% 64% 66% 68% 70% 72% 74% 76% 78% ri cloth ri give 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 222% 24% 26% 28% 30% 32% 34% 36% 38% 40% 42% 44% 46% 48% 50% 52% 54% 56% 58% 60% 62% 64% 66% 68% 70% 72% 74% 76% 78% lai easy lai page

PAGE 57

57 analyzed separately from the rest of the data for a more accurate representation of the tones in Dimasa syllables. T he normalized pitch track s for the three Dimasa tones (Figures 3 11) are represented with an additional pitch track. As syllables with / / and /t / onsets render distinct pitch tracks for the rising tone, their pitch tracks are shown separately. Nevertheless, the tone with the high level pitch contour should be treated as an allophonic variant of the rising tone in Dimasa that is conditioned by onset conditions containing / / and/t /. It is well attested in the literature that voicesless and sonorant onsets may raise the pitch of the following TBU. In case of Dimasa that is exactly what is happening. The inherent property of the aspirated voiceless consonants to raise the pitch has res ulted in an already raised F0 onset for the rising tones in Dimasa. It should also born in mind that in this analysis the initial 20% of the signal is ignored and not considered for analysis.. Figure 39. Normalized pitch track of the /t u/ syllable for all speakers 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 222% 24% 26% 28% 30% 32% 34% 36% 38% 40% 42% 44% 46% 48% 50% 52% 54% 56% 58% 60% 62% 64% 66% 68% 70% 72% 74% 76% 78% thu deep thu sleep thu spit

PAGE 58

58 Figure 310. Normalized pitch track of / u/ syllables for all speakers Fig ure 311. Average normalized values of the three t ones in Dimasa 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 222% 24% 26% 28% 30% 32% 34% 36% 38% 40% 42% 44% 46% 48% 50% 52% 54% 56% 58% 60% 62% 64% 66% 68% 70% 72% 74% 76% 78% shu beat shu measure shu stitch 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 222% 24% 26% 28% 30% 32% 34% 36% 38% 40% 42% 44% 46% 48% 50% 52% 54% 56% 58% 60% 62% 64% 66% 68% 70% 72% 74% 76% 78% Falling Mid Rising Rising (sh, th)

PAGE 59

59 Fig ure 312. Means of F0d for nonnormalized pitch tracks with standard error bars Fig ure 313. Means of F0d for normalized pitch t racks with standard error bars The average normalized F0d values for different tones were further tested for statistical significance by conducting an ANOVA and a Bonferroni post hoc test. An ANOVA test was conducted where F0d was the dependent variable and tone types were factors. The ANOVA test showed significance among all the tone groups compared where [ F (2, 1070) = 328.74, p < 0.05] Rising 16.79 Mid 1.37 Falling 20.64 40 30 20 10 0 10 20 30 40 Rising 1.36 Mid 0.04 Falling 1.35 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2

PAGE 60

60 Further a Bonferroni post hoc test was conducted on the same set of data with an adjusted 0.017. Tone type wise comparisons of F0d demonstrated that all the three tone types were significantly different ( Bonferroni adjusted p < 0.017) from each other in terms of their average F0d (see Table D 7 and D 8, Appendix D). Perception Test As a part of this study, a pilot study was conducted to confirm if Dimasa speakers perceive the differences between the three tones in Dimasa or not. However, this study has some serious limitations. Firstly, t he conditions in which the perception tests w ere conducted were not ideal perceptual study settings and secondly, a very small number of participants participated in the perception test mak ing the results underprovided for statistical analyses In the aforementioned perception test t wo female Dimasa speakers participated. Using a laptop computer and a pair of headphones they listened to real speech data of Dimasa in the consistent sentence frame mentioned before They were asked to choose one of the three options on the laptop screen that best repres ents the meaning of the target word that the participant heard On the laptop screen, the real meaning of the word appeared along with a meaning of the target word, if spoken in a contrastive tone. Each word was repeated randomly on four different occasion s Among the data presented to the participants were the /thi/ and /thu/ sets of syllables. T he results of the perception test collected from two Dimasa speakers (Figure D 1, Appendix D) The results demonstrate that both the participants could correctly categorize all the iterations of the /thi/ set of syllables (Figure D 1) However, one participant wrongly identified one of the repetitions of the /thu/ sets of syllables, resulting in overall two occasions of inaccu rate identification Nevertheless, this small perception test further strengthens the argument that there are three lexical tones in Dimasa and they are perceived categorically by its native speakers.

PAGE 61

61 Rabha Monosyllables Rabha is one of the lesser studied languages among the Tibeto Burman languages of the North East India. Until recently, Rabha was considered to be merely a dialect of Bodo owing to its lexical similarity with the Bodo language. However, recently there has been some interest in the languag e demonstrating that despite its being related to the Bodo language, it is not merely a dialect of Bodo. Basumatary (2004) compared the Bodo and Rabha languages where tonal similarities among the two languages were also taken into consideration. According to Basumatary (2004), Rabha has two underlying tones high and unmarked low tones. He however, does not explain why the low tone is considered unmarked in the language On the other hand, personal communication with many Rabha scholars indicated that Rabha h as one more tone leading to a three way contrast among tones in the language. In the following sections using acoustical analyses it is shown that Rabha, like Dimasa has three lexical tones and the claims are further supported using statistical analyses. Data Collection A set of 54 monosyllables read from a word list (see A ppendix B ) were recorded from eight Rabha speakers (4 male and 4 female) who belong to the 2540 age group. A ll eight speakers were from the Tilapara village of Goalpara district in Ass am and they spoke the Rangdani variety of Rabha, which is considered to be the standard variety. Five speakers were monolingual in Rabha and while eliciting data from those speakers a bilingual speaker speaking Assamese and Rabha facilitated the conversations between the speakers and the researcher. T hree speakers spoke Assamese apart from speaking Rabha as their first language. The target word list was constructed from Basumatary (2 004) and was complemented in consultation with a native speaker of Rabha (see Appendix B). The words in the list were randomized and the speakers were asked to produce them in a sentence as in Example 3 3.

PAGE 62

62 angF X aMnaR 15Acoustic Analysis (3 3) I X say past I said X Each word was rep eated four times by the speakers however, only the first three iterations were considered for analyses to avoid listing intonation affecting the pitch. The target words were re ad by the Rabha speakers without any tone marking and the objective of this production test was to see how many levels of pitch were distinguished in the production of the Rabha data. Among the Rabha speakers, t he average pitch ranges of the male and the female speakers were significantly different from each other. While the average pitch of the male speakers was 180 Hz, the average pitch of the female speakers was 275 Hz. Hence, the analyses for Rabha was based upon pitch values normalized using z scores so that individual differences among speakers and tokens can be taken care of. Similar to the Dimasa analyses in the previous section, pitch points were calculated across 50 points on the pitch track, each point representing 2% of the total length of the pitch track. However, assuming onset and coda consonantal effects to be prevailing up to 20% of the pitch track, pitch points in the initial 20% and the final 20% of the pitch track were not considered for analysis. In the following sections two way contra sts in pitch in Rabha are discussed for the words kho and bia In this analysis, initially it was attempted to recognize the tonal contrasts by conducting visual examination of the pitch tracks of Rabha. However, after identifying the tonal categories with the aid of visual analysis, statististical tests will be conducted to verify the validy of the outcome. 15 The superscripted R denotes a rising tone, the superscripted M denotes a mi d level tone and the superscripted F denoted a falling tone.

PAGE 63

63 Fig ure 314. Pitch t rack for /kho/ for female speakers T he pitch ranges of Rabha speakers speech vary significantly depending on the gender of the speaker (Figure 3 14 and Figure 315) T he pitch tracks of /kho/ demonstrate evidence of two tones in Rabha (Figure 3 16). While /kho/ water is assigned a falling tone, the /khHowever, the direction of tones in Rabha is not limited only to level and falling. The analysis of the /bia /set of syllables also provides evidence for a third type of tone contour in Rabha. In case of the /bia/ sets of syllables, two types of tone s are assigned to each meaning of the syllable (Figure 3 17 and Figure 318) The word / bia/ for marriage is assigned a mid level tone whereas; the word /bia/ for break is assigned a rising tone. It is worth noting that the /bia/ for marriage is a borrowing from Assamese an Indo European language spoken in the proximity of the Rabha speaking areas. o/ for weave is assigned a mid level tone. Similar two way tone assignment of a falling and midlevel tones is also demonstrated in the /so/ and the /t ua/ sets of monosyllables in Rabha. 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 325 350 kho water kho weave

PAGE 64

64 Figure 315. Pitch Track for /kh o/ for male speakers Figure 316. Normalized pitch track for /kho/ for all speakers of Rabha 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 325 350 kho water kho weave 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 khoweave khowell

PAGE 65

65 Figure 317. Pitch t rack for /bia/ for female speakers Figure 318. Pitch t rack for /bia/ for male speakers The normalized and averaged pitch tracks for the /bia/ syllables (Figure 3 19) demonstrate that they are are assigned with two distinct tones one with mid level pitch track and the other with a rising pitch contour. Hence, it confirms that apart from the f alling and a level tone, Rabha also has a mid level tone. The spectrographic evidence accumulated indicates that there are three tones in Rabha. 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 bia break bia marriage 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 bia break bia marriage

PAGE 66

66 Figure 3 19. Normalized pitch t rack for /bia/ for all speakers The pitch tracks of Rabha clearly show a thre e way pitch distinction in monosyllables (Figure 3 14 through Figure 319) F rom the shape of the pitch contours of the normalized pitch tracks it can be concluded that Rabha shows a three way pitch contrast. Whether the three way pitch distinction can be translated into a three way tonal distinction, will be discussed in the sections to follow. As mentioned at the beginning of this section, the much claimed three way distinction in Rabha words was also attempted to be capture d. There were at least five set s of minimal triplets identified from previous works and presented to the speakers for elicitation. However, spea kers unfamiliarity with all three words in every set prevented us from testing that. Nevertheless, one set of the supposed three way distinction could be successfully produced by all the speakers in this study. The /rai/ set of segmental homophones having three distinct meanings of banana leaf, to bring and judgment are analyzed in this section. T he syllable /rai/ is produced with two diff erent tones by Rabha male and female speakers (Figures 3 20 and Figure 321) It is also noticed that the words for bring and banana leaf are 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 bia break bia marriage

PAGE 67

67 produced with a rising tone similar to that of /bia/ for break However, the one for judgment is produced with a level pitch that is similar to the pitch track of the /bia/ syllable for marriage F urther investigation into this particular set revealed that like the /bia/ for marriage, the /rai/ for judgment is borrowed from Assamese an Indo Aryan nontonal language and hence it is not unlikely that Rabha uses a mid level contour tone for the loan words incorporated into the language. This argument is further substantiated by the fact that even the word /bia/ f or marriage is also a borrowed lexic al item from Assamese. However, as the mid level tone also occurs in Rabha indigenous words, it is safe to conclude that the midlevel tone, like the rising and the falling tone; is a lexical tone in Rabha. At the same time, it is also plausible that the mid level tone is a default tone in Rabha. Like many other languages it is possible that Rabha also assign s the mid level tone to the lexical items that are borrowed from other languages Figure 320. Pitch t rack for /rai/ for male speakers 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 325 350 rai bananaleaf rai bring rai judgement

PAGE 68

68 Figure 321. Pitch t rack for /rai/ for female speakers Fig ure 3 22. Normalized pitch t rack of /rai/ for all speakers Statistical Analysis The primary goal of the statistical analysis is to see if the three tones in Rabha differ from one another in a statistically significant way. As with Dimasa, at least two of the three tones in 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 325 350 rai bananaleaf rai bring rai judgement 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 rai bananaleaf rai bring rai judgement

PAGE 69

69 Rabha are contour tones too. Hence, conducting a statistical t est with average pitch values as dependent variable will be highly mis leading. Hence, as in Dimasa after visually examining the pitch contours, F0d values of the Rabha monosyllables were categorized into three tonal categories namely ris ing, mid level and falling (Figure 3 24) The F0d values of the three tonal categories were subjected to statistical tests and compared for statistical variation among them. A one way ANOVA was conducted on the Rabha data with F0d as dependent variable and tone types as inde pendent variables ( Table D 9, Appendix D) Subsequently a Bonferroni test was also conducted to further support the results of the ANOVA analysis ( Table D 10, Appendix D) Figure 323. Mean F0d for nonnormalized Rabha t ones with standard error bars T he ANOVA test revealed that there is a significant difference among tonal categories where F0d is the dependent variable [ F (2, 771) = 235.95, p< 0.05] In the Bonferroni post hoc test the three tone types are individually compared with F0d as the dependent variable. The results of the Bonferroni post hoc test shows that the three tone types are significantly different from each another ( Bonferroni adjusted p < 0.017). Rising 22.90 Mid 0.83 Falling 12.20 30 20 10 0 10 20 30 40

PAGE 70

70 In Figure 3 24, pitch tracks normalized using z score and averaged across all speakers for the three tones in Rabha are presented that demonstrate three different levels of tone assignment in monosyllables in Rabha. Figure 324. Normalized pitch c ontours of the three tones in Rabha Discussion In this chapter it was shown that both Rabha and Dimasa have three phonological tones namely, rising, falling and level mid tone. It was also shown that any monosyllable in Rabha and Dimasa can be assigned any of the three phonological tones available in their lexical tone inventories In Dimasa, apart f rom the three phonological tones, an allotone of the rising tone exists those surfaces as a high level tone. This allotone is conditioned by the initial onset consonants / / and / / that are highly sonorous. In both Dimasa and Rabha, some speakers showed extremely small difference in terms of average F0d of the contour tones. For instance, speaker CH of Dimasa has an average F0d of only 4.14 Hz in the production of rising tones and 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 Rising Mid Falling

PAGE 71

71 8.99 Hz in the production of falling tones (see Appendix C, Table C 1). Si milarly, Rabha speaker KC has an average F0d of only 10.68 in the production of falling tones of Rabha. Even though the F0d values are very small, it is not uncommon to have such small differences of fundamental frequency in the production of contrastive t ones in tone languages (e.g. Fok 1974, Peng 1997, and Barry and Blamey 2004) On the other hand the highest F0d for rising and falling tones in Dimasa are 31.0 Hz and 31.18 Hz (produced by speaker MT). In case of Rabha the highest F0d for rising tones is 31.04 Hz as produced by speaker TR and the highest F0d for falling tones is 32.99 as produced by speaker KO. Average F0d for Dimasa rising tone is 16.7l Hz and for falling tone it is 20.64 Hz. In case of Rabha the average F0d for rising tone is 22.90 Hz and for the falling tone it is 12.20 Hz. Contour tones in tone languages demonstrate a plethora of variations in terms of the difference between the offset and onset of the pitch contour. Languages like Mandarin Chinese and Thai show large differences between the onset and offset of contour tones. Abramson (1962) showed that Thai high falling tones show a fall of about 55 Hz (155Hz to 100 Hz) while low (falling) tones show a fall of about 10 Hz (120 Hz to 110 Hz). On the other hand Thai high rising to nes show a rise of about 45 Hz (110 Hz to 155 Hz) and low (rising) tones show a rise of about 15 Hz (130 Hz to 145 Hz). In a more recent study on Thai, Mor and Zsiga (2006) have shown that Thai falling tones may fall about 80 Hz (260 Hz to 160 Hz) and a l ow tone (phonetically falling) tone can fall about 50 Hz (210 Hz to 160 Hz). They have also shown that Thai rising tones may rise for 40 Hz (180 Hz to 220 Hz) from onset to offset, while a high tone (with a phonetically rising contour) in Thai may rise for about 25 Hz (225 Hz to 250 Hz).

PAGE 72

72 In case of Mandarin Chinese tones, Chuang, Hiki, Sone and Ni mura (1972) have shown that the rising tone in Mandarin Chinese can rise for 25 Hz (85 to 110 Hz) from the onset to the offset. Similarly, a falling tone in Manda rin Chinese may fall for 40 Hz (125 Hz to 85 Hz) from its onset to the offset. Moore and Jongman (1997) have shown that Mandarin Chinese rising tones rise for 60 Hz (210 Hz to 270 Hz) from their onset to the offset. They report that the average falling ton e produced by the subjects in their study exhibit a fall of 90 Hz (270 Hz to 180 Hz) from onset to the offset. Fok (1974) has shown that in Cantonese a high falling tone can fall for about 60 Hz (180 Hz to 120 Hz), while a low falling tone can fall for about 50 Hz (120 Hz to 70 Hz). Fok reports that in case of the high rising tones in Cantonese, the difference between the offset and the onset can be as large as 60 Hz (120 Hz to 180 Hz). On the other hand he observes that the difference between offset and of fset of a low rising tone in Cantonese is almost half that of a high rising tone i.e. 30 Hz (120 Hz to 150 Hz). Khouw and Ciocca (2007) show that their subjects produced the low rising tone in Cantonese with a rise of about 50 Hz (180 Hz to 230 Hz). On the other hand their subjects obtained a fall of 55 Hz (225 Hz to 170 Hz) while producing the low falling tone in Cantonese. The same study reported that the rise in a high rising tone in Cantonese is of 85 Hz (180 Hz to 265 Hz). However, the above mentioned differences between the offset and offset of contour tones are not always as large in all languages. Rather, they can be substantially small differences even in the languages that are discussed above. For example, Peng (1997) notes that in case of Taiwanes e tones the difference of fundamental frequency between onset and offset of low rising tones can be as small as 10 Hz. Sum (2001) while comparing Cantonese contour tone production of normal and dysarthric speakers notes that normal Cantonese speakers may p roduce the low

PAGE 73

73 rising tone of Cantonese with a rising slope of less than 10 Hertz. Barry and Blamey (2004) also presents data of two adult Cantonese speakers where the rising slope of the Cantonese low rising tone is 10 Hz or lower in some tokens. Moreover it has been attested in case of Kammu that the fundamental frequency difference between the two tones in Kammu (high and low) can be quite small with the average ranging between 4 Hz to 25 Hz for male speakers (Svantesson and House, 2006). Considering the evidence from previous perception and production studies, it can be argued that the small F0d of some speakers of Rabha and Dimasa in producing the rising and the falling tones of the two languages falls well within the distinguishable rang e of the native speakers. Dimasa Monosyllables Acoustic analyses of the Dimasa monosyllables have shown that Dimasa has three lexical tones which can be assigned to any Dimasa monosyllables. The findings in this chapter concur with the findings of Singha ( 2001) as far as the number of tones in Dimasa is concerned. However, as far as the shape of the three tones is concerned, this work concludes that the three tones are actually rising, mid level and falling tones. From the acoustic analyses of the Dimasa monosyllables, it appears that the shape of the pitch contour is more importa nt in classifying the tones than the average fundamental frequency of the pitch contour. To further strengthen this argument, a statistical examination using Bonferroni test was c onducted where average normalized pitch was the dependent variable and tone type was the factor. The results demonstrated that as far as average pitch of tones is concerned, the three tonal categories are not significantly different from one other in Dimas a (see Table D 1, Appendix D). As the rising and the falling tones are contour tones, it was expected that they show no significance in terms of their average pitch values. However, in terms of the difference between the normalized F0 of 78th and 22nd points of the averaged pitch contour (F0d), the three tones in Dimasa do show

PAGE 74

74 significant difference among them. Hence, statistical analyses support the claim of this study that Dimasa tones are significant ly different from each other in terms of the shape of the contours. I t is noticed that Dimasa s peaker PJs pitch contours in producing the three tones are very closely spaced (Figure 3 2 through Figure 3 4) However, in terms of the shape of the contour, the three tones are significantly different and spaced from each other. Hence, it is pertinent to say that the three lexical tones in Dimasa are namely rising, mid level and falling tones. C onsidering the spectral and statistical evidence, it can be concluded that Dimasa has three lexical tones that are assig ned on monosyllables namely, rising, midlevel and falling. The results of the perception tests conducted on Dimasa speakers (Figure D 1, Appendix D) also reinforce this claim. Rabha Monosyllables As with Dimasa, acoustic analysis of Rabha monosyllables also demonstrates a three way tonal distinction. The evidence presented in this chapter demonstrates that Rabha has three lexical tones that are primarily distinguished by the shape of their contours Similar to Dimasa, Rabha has a rising, a mid level and a falling tone Even though, in the collected data not too many triplets showing three way tonal contrasts were found, it can be concluded that the three tones in Rabha can be assigned to any monosy llable in the language. However, observing the tone assignment pattern in loan words, it can be suggested that the mid level tone is a default tone which can be assigned to words which are not underlyingly specified with a tone in Rabha. Statistical analy ses of the Rabha monosyllables show that as far as mean F0d is concerned, the three lexical tones are significantly different from each other. However as far as the average pitch of the monosyllables is concerned, the three tones do not differ significantly (Appendix D, Table D 2) It is noticed that tone types do not have any effect on the average F0 of Rabha

PAGE 75

75 monosyllables. On the contrary, it is seen that tone type s do have a significant effect on the F0d of Rabha monosyllables. Considering the statistical and acoustic evidence for Rabha monosyllables in this chapter, it can be concluded that Rabha, like Dimasa also has a three way tonal contrast and a ny of the three tones can be assigned to any lexical item in Rabha.

PAGE 76

76 CHAPTER 4 TONES IN DI SYLLABLES This chapter describes the tone assignment pattern in disyllables in Dimasa and Rabha. Joseph and Burling (2001) and Sarmah (2004) claim that BodoG aro languages assign only one tone for each word, regardless of its syllable size. Both Joseph and Burling (2001) and Sarmah (2004) agree that Bodo assigns lexical tones to the rightmost syllable of a word whereas the preceding syllables are assigned a def ault mid tone. Joseph and Burling (2001) investigated the tone assignment pattern in Tiwa, another language of the Bodo Garo group of languages. Joseph and Burling (2001) come to the conclusion that in Tiwa a lexical tone can be assigned to either of the s yllables in a disyllabic word, whereas the remaining syllable is assigned a default tone. Not much is known about the tone assignment pattern i n Rabha and Dimasa. Singha (2001) does not explicitly talk about tone assignment in disyllables in Dimasa. Howeve r, from t he data provided in Singha (2001) it is apparent that the author is of the view that both the syllables in a disyllabic entry in Dimasa are capable of hosting a lexical tone each Similarly Basumatary (2004) does not provide any insight into the t one assignment pattern in Rabha disyllables. Hence, in this chapter the goal is to investigate tone assignment pattern in two Bodo Garo languages, Rabha and Dimasa, and to see whether their tone assignment patterns concur with the tone assignment pattern i n Tiwa and Bodo as claimed by Joseph and Burling (2001) and Sarmah (2004), or each syllable hosts a single lexical tone. This chapter demonstrates that like in the case of Bodo (Sarmah 2004), Dimasa and Rabha too underlyingly as sign a single lexical tone to every disyllabic word. Moreover, it is also demonstrated that the lexical tone is aligned to the rightmost syllable of a disyllabic word. On the contrary the initial syllable of the disyllabic words is not underlyingly specified with a ny lexical tone. H owever, well formedness rule of tonal phonology requires that every syllable in the two

PAGE 77

77 langua ges be assigned a tone. Hence, the initial syllable is assigned a n unmarked mid tone of the two languages. In the following sections, the tone assignment patterns in Dimasa and Rabha are discussed. Dimasa Disyllables Acoustic Analysis Dundas (1908) provides a few sets of segmentally homophonous disyllables. For this study, the sets found in Dundas (1908) were confirmed and enriched by a Dimasa language consultant (see Appendix A) Apart from that, Singha (2001) provides the following sets ( T able 41) of disyllables with the tones minimally marked .16Table 4 1. Set of disyllables Meaning Dimasa Word year / miti / crop /maitai/ source /mai ai/ As with monosyllables, we measured pitch at 50 points along the tone bearing unit of each syllable, and plotted pitch graphs for 9 sets of disyllabic words, including the ones in Example 4 1. goron company goron confuse (4 1) ha thai bullet ha thai hillock ha thai market ha thDimasa speaker BT produces the the pitch track of the first syllable of the /goron/ syllables (Figure 4 1). As with monosyllables, the initial and final 20% of the pitch track is igniored assuming consonantal influence in that part. T he pitch track of speaker BT producing the first syllable /goron/ resembles that of a mid tone in both pitch level and (lack of) contour (Figure ai teeth 16 The tone markings and transcriptions are as they are found in Singha (2004) where an accent mark on the top of the vowel signifies a high tone whereas vowels not assigned with any tone diacriti cs signifies that they are marked with a low tone which, according to Singha (2004) is a default tone in the Dimasa language.

PAGE 78

78 4.1) Even if the two pitch tracks of the first syllable of the word /goron/ are different in terms of average pitch, both of them belong to the same toneme, i.e. a mid tone. However, the pitch tracks of the s econd s yllable (Figure 4 2) show evidence of two distinct tones namely, rising and falling. Figure 41. P itch tracks of the first syllable /go/ for /goron/ as produced by subject BT In case of /hathai/, which has four different meanings associated with it, we see that the first syllable for all the four semantic representations is largely similar, in terms of direction of the pitch of the tone (Figure 43). This suggests that it is not possible for the Dimasa speakers to distinguish the word meanings from the initial syllable of the word /hathai/. However, as far as the second syllable is concerned, acoustic evidences (Figure 4 4) confirm that there are two distinct tonal categories associated with them namely, the rising, mid level and falling tones. Hen ce, thetone on the second syllable s contributed to semantic identification of the /hath ai/ syllables. 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 company confuse

PAGE 79

79 Figure 42. Pitch t racks for the second syllable /ron/ of /goron/ as produced by speaker BT Figure 43. Pitch track on the first syllable /ha/ of / hath ai/ as produced by speaker BT 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 company confuse 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 bullet hillock market teeth

PAGE 80

80 Figure 4 4. Pitch track s of the second syllable /thai/ of /hathTable 4 2. Average TBU length in Dimasa s yllables ai/ as produced by speaker BT It is also noticed while analyzing the Dimasa data that the TBU duration in the first syllable of disyllables is significantly less than that of the second syllable. T he average vowel length of Dimasa monosyllables and disyllables measured in Sarmah and Wi ltshire ( in press ) indicate that the first syllables of Dimasa may be too short for a TBU to be recognized correctly. Cross linguistic data also support the view that for contour tones to be realized, the vowel or rime duration has to be considerably long and not less than 100130 ms (Xu 2004). Hence, due to the shorter length of the TBUs noticed in Dimasa ( T able 42), it may not be possible to perceive or produce the contour tones (rising and falling) in Dimasa rendering the tone on the first syllable red undant for semantic identification. CV CVV/CVN Monosyllables 137 ms 162 ms Disyllables First syllable 70 ms 114 ms Second Syllable 120ms 156 ms 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 bullet hillock market teeth

PAGE 81

81 Evidenc e presented here suggests that in Dimasa disyllabl es, the rising and the falling tones can occur only in the second syllable, while the first syllable can only have a mid level tone. This conclusion is not surprising considering that similar phenomena have been noticed in other Bodo languages such as Bodo and Tiwa (Joseph and Burling 2001, Sarmah 2004) Statistical Analysis The data for the disyllables was subjected to statistical tests to confirm the claims of the previous sections. In the previous section it is claimed that there is no difference among the initial syllables of Dimasa disyllables as far as pitch is concerned. In that case it is expected that the initial syllables of a disyllable do not show any statistically significant difference among them. Hence, statistical test s are divided into two sections in this chapter. In the first section, ANOVA and Bonferroni tests will be conducted on the normalized F0d values of the individual words produced by all speakers to see the statistical differences in the initial and the fina l syllables. In the following section a statistical test will be conducted collectively on the initial syllables of all the Dimasa disyllables to see if they are statistically significant when grouped by words. The /goron/ and /hathThe normalized pitch tracks of the /goron/ set of syllables, as discussed in the previous section, do not demonstrate any significant F0d differences in the first syllable even if they are associated with two separate meanings. However, the F0d measures on the second syllable differ in correspondence to the meaning it represents. ai/ sets of disyllables T he first syllables of /goron/ is assigned a mid level tone; however the second syllables are assigned two distinct tones (Figure 4 5) The second syllable of the word /goron/ for company is assigned with a falling tone whereas, the second syllable of the /goron/ for confuse is assigned a rising tone.

PAGE 82

82 Figure 45. Normalized pitch t racks of the /goron/ disyllables Similarly, the /hathai/ set of syllables also do not show F0d difference on their first syllables. However, the pitch track of the second syllables does demonstrate categorical tonal dif ferences ( Figure 46) The initial syllables of the /hathai/ set of disyllables are assigned level tones. However, the second syllabl es of the /hathai/ for bullet and hillock are assigned rising tones. The second syllable of the /hathai/ for market and teeth are assigned a falling tone. The F0d values of the first syl lable of the syllables /goron/ and /hathThe results of the Bonferroni tests for /goron/ ( Table D 11, Appendix D) indicate that the F0d values of the first syllables of the /goron/ syllables are not significantly different (Bonferroni adjusted p > 0.001). However, as far as the second syllables are concerned, the two words are significantly dif ferent from each other in terms of F0d (Bonferroni adjusted p < 0.001). ai/were subjected to one way ANOVA and Bonferroni tests with syllable position (initial or final) as factors and F0d as dependant variable. 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 company confuse

PAGE 83

83 Figure 46. Normalized p itch t racks of the /hathai/ disyllables Similarly, the results of the statistical tests for the /hathai/ syllables show that the difference between the initial syllables of different realizations of /hathai/ is not significantly different from one another ( p > 0.002) Even though the pitch track of the first syllables of /hathai/ is phonetically falling, they are not falling significantly enough to be categorized as a falling tone in Dimasa. Hence, it can be concluded that the first syllables of /hathai/ are assigned a mid level tone and its falling nature is purely phonetic. It can also be assumed that the consistent fall on all the initial syllables is due to the anticipation of the rise in the following syllable conditioned by the onset consonant /th/. However, the second syllables are significantly different from each other forming three separate groups among them (Table D 12, Appendix D) The second syllables of /hathai/ for bullet and hillock are not significantly different from each other as they both are assigned a rising tone ( p > 0.002) However, both bullet and hillock are significantly different from the /hath ai/ for market and teeth which are assigned a falling tone ( p < 0.002) 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 bullet hillock market teeth

PAGE 84

84 The results from the statistical tests and spectrographic evidences ( Figure 4 6) demonstrate that the /hathai/ set of syllables are categorized into two distinct tonal categories namely risin g and falling, based on the pitch contours of the final syllables. However, as far as the initial syllables are concerned the /hathai/ set does not show any significant variation in the pitch contour. Considering the evidence from the /goron/ and /hathai/ sets of syllables, we come to the conclusion that in Dimasa, only the second syllable of a disyllabic word is assigned a lexical tone (rising or falling in case of /goron/ and /hathRabha Disyllables ai/ syllables) and the initial syllables are assigned a default mid tone. Acoustic Analyses Rabha is primarily a monosyllabic language. However, Basumatary (2004) mentions a small set of disyllables in Rabha not focusing much on the tone assignment pattern. In this study we tested five minimal sets of disyllab les in order to investigate the tone assignment pattern in disyllables of Rabha. The /kana/ and /rima/ set of disyllables mentioned in Basumatary (2004) have the following representations as in Example 4 2 in Rabha kana abundance rima cook (4 2) kana blind rima catch kana dress (v.) T he initial syllable s of the /kana/ set of disyllables are demonstrated as spoken by speaker AR in Figure 47. It is shown that the speaker AR assigns a mid level tone on all the three initial syllables of the three Rabha words. T he three initial syllables are assigned a mid level tone ( Figure 4 7) Eventhough, the pitch track of abundance is higher than the other two pitch tracks, the three pitch tracks fall within same same tonal category based on the di rection of tone change.

PAGE 85

85 Figure 47. Pitch track s o f the first syllable /ka/ of / kana / as produced by speaker AR However, it is noticed that the second syllables of the words /kana/ are different from each other as far as the contour of the pitch track is concerned ( Figure 48) While dress and blind are assigned a mid level tone, abundance is assigned the falling tone of Rabha. Figure 48. Pitch track s o f the second syllable /na/ of / kana / as produced by speaker AR 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 abundance blind dress 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 abundance blind dress

PAGE 86

86 Similarly the pitch tracks of the /rima/ set of syllables as produced by speaker AR show that the first syllables of the words for catch and cook are ver y similar (Figure 4 9) However, in case of the second syllables of the two words, it is noticed that the two words are behave differently in terms of the direction of the ir pitch track (Figure 4 10) The second syllable of the /rima/ for cook is assigne d a mid level tone whereas; the /rima/ for catch is assigned a falling tone. Figure 4 9. Initial s yllable /ri/ of /rima/ as produced by speaker AR From the above discussion, it can be hypothesized that as far as speaker AR is concerned, there is no tone difference between the first syllables in the Rabha disyllables. The first syllables are assigned a mid level tone, which can be considered as the default one among the three tones in Rabha. However, the second syllables of the disyllabic words in Rabha are specified with distinct lexical tones that trigger distinct semantic representations. Tone assignement in Rabha disyllables are very similar to the tone assignement in other Bodo Garo languages. For example, Sarmah (2004) reports similar mechanisms in Bodo. 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 catch cook

PAGE 87

87 Fig ure 4 10. Final s yllable /ma/ of /rima/ as produced by speaker AR Statistical Analyses In order to conduct statistical tests on the Rabha data for disyllables, the data was normalized using the z score normalization method in order to avoid speaker variability in the production of the tones. The normalized pitch track for the /kana/ syllables is shown in Figure 411. Figure 411. Normalized pitch tracks for /kana/ 75 100 125 150 175 200 225 250 275 300 325 350 catch cook 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 abundance blind dress

PAGE 88

88 It is noticed in that all the initial syllables of the disyllabic entr y /kana/ is assigned a mid level tone (Figure 4 11) However, among the second syllables, blind and dress are assigned a mid level tone, whereas, abundance is assigned a falling tone. Similarly it is seen that the pitch track s on the first syllables of /rima/ are not entirely indicative of the meaning that the word represents (Figure 4 12) However, in the second syllables, the pitch track for catch is significantly falling assigning the final syllable a falling tones; whereas, the final syllable of the /rima/ for cook is assigned a mid level tone. Figure 4 12. Normalized pitch tracks for /rima/ To further substantiate these observertions an ANOVA test with a Bonferroni test for mean variance was conducted. In the Bonferroni test, F0d was considere d as dependant variable and syllable position in the words were considered factors. An ANOVA test conducted on the /rima/ set s of syllables confirmed that there is significant differences between syllable positions in terms of their average F0d [ F (3, 128) = 23.32, p < 0.05]. A subsequent Bonferroni post hoc test confirmed that the initial syllables of /rima/ are not different from each other in terms of average F0d ( Bonferroni adjusted p > 0.008). 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 catch cook

PAGE 89

89 However, as far as the second syllables of /rima/ is concerned, they show a significant difference in terms of the average F0d ( Bonferroni adjusted p < 0.008). Similarly, the /kana/ sets of syllables also showed that there is a significant interaction between syllable position and their average F0d [ F (5, 202) = 14.50, p < 0.05]. A follow up Bonferroni post hoc test showed that initial syllables of the /kana/ sets of syllables are not significantly different from each other in terms of their average F0d ( Bonferroni adjusted p > 0.003). However, in case of the final syllable, the average F0d of the second syllable of the /kana/ for abundance differed significantly from the second syllable of the /kana/ for blind and the /kana/ for dress ( Bonferroni adjusted p < 0.003). However, the second syllables of the /kana/ for dress and blind are not significantly different from each other ( Bonferroni adjusted p > 0.003). These statistical results are analogous to the representations of the pitch tracks in Figure s 411 and 412 where /kana/ and /rima/ pitch contours show a significant difference in the final syllable Hence, the final syllable may be considered as the one which is assigned with a distinct tone that semantically distinguish es one disyllabic word from another. Discussion The acoustic and statistical evidence presented in the sections above demonstrate that in Dimasa and Rabha the tone of the initial syllable of a disyllabic entry is not active in distinguishing one lexical item from another. The initial syllables of the disyllabic entries are assigned a default mid tone. However, the final syllable of the disyllabic entries is assigned any one of the three lexical tones in the two languages. The tone assignment in the final syllable of a set of disyllabic entries is distinct so as to repres ent distinct semantic representations. In this chapter it has been seen that the mid level tones in the two languages namely, Dimasa and Rabha, function as default tones which may also explain the assignment of the midlevel to nes to loan words in Rabha

PAGE 90

90 CHAPTER 5 MORPHOPHONOLOGY Overview This chapter investigates some of the morphophonological phenomena observed in Dimasa and Rabha. Among the BodoGaro languages, discussions on the interaction between tones and morphology are restricted mostly to Bodo. Bhattacharya (1977), Weidert (1987) Joseph and Burling (2001) and Sarmah (2004) show that in Bodo morphology and tones interact with one another in an interesting way. According to Bhattacharya (1977) the high tone is lowered to the next lower tone (hence, tone 1 > tone 2)17Sarmah (2004) concludes that in Bodo derived words we observe a tonal pattern that is similar to the tone assignment pattern in disyllables In d erived words in Bodo as in the disyllabic words, the lexical to ne assignment tends to be right aligned. It was observed that and a low tone is raised to the immediate higher tone (tone 3>tone 2) in a condition where it is associated with a suffix In other words, whenever a suffix is added, the tone of the root is assigned a mid tone. Weidert (1987) shows that the high tone in Bodo arises due to a glottal segment present in the lexical entry. Hence, according to Weidert the high tone in t he second syllable of the word / a well is due to the g lottal stop present in the word / water. Therefore when the toneless plural suffix /po / we see that the suffix is assigned a high tone as the preceding syllable has a glottal stop at the end. Following Weidert this phenomenon can be represented as in Example 5 1. [ r ] + / por / [ rp r ] (5 1) well pl. wells Weidert (1987) 17 For tone marking, Bhattacharya (1977)s transcription convention is followed here, where tone 1 is a high tone, tone 2 is a mid tone and tone 3 is a low tone. He also assumes an unmarked tone to be present in Bodo that he represents as tone 4.

PAGE 91

91 prefixal causative and suffixal pluralization mimic non derived words in permitting only a single tone specification on the rightmost syllable as demonstrated in Example 5 2. Mman+Hsi+M+Hbang MmanMsiM+Hbang (5 2) Man + many many men Sarmah (2004) Further, pluralization results in transferring tonal specification on the stem to the suffixes, as shown in Example 5 3 and Example 54, neutralizing the tone on the stem, once again resulting in output form obeying the phonotactics of nonderived words: +H M+H (5 3) you (hon, singular)+ pl. you (hon, plural) +Hno + Mno+H (5 4) house + pl. houses Sarmah (2004) However, Sarmah (2004) also demonstrated another kind of morphophonemic alteration in Bodo where the suffix is underlyingly specified for a distinct tonal identity. The ho causative suffix in Bodo is underlyingly specified for a low tone and it retains it tonal specification in the derivation. At the same time the inherent tonal specification of the stem is also preserved. This type of affixation does not result in a ny tonal alteration of the stem as it is shown in Example 5 5. Mpho+Hthai + hoL Mpho+HthaiLmorphology. Hence, in this chapter suffixation and reduplication in the two languages are investigated. It is concluded that Dimasa and Rabha derivations do not follow tone assignment pattern similar to each other It is shown in this chapter that in Dimasa and Rabha the suffixes are underlying specified a lexical tone. I n derivations in Dimasa, both the root and the suffix retain ho (5 5) to believe caus. to make believe Considering the interaction between tone and morphology in Bodo, it becomes pertinent to investigate if Dimasa and Rabha also demonstrate similar interactions between tone and

PAGE 92

92 their underlying tonal specifications However, in Rabha the underlying tonal specificat ion of the root is not retained but the underlying tonal specification of the suffix is preserved Dimasa Dimasa primarily employs suffixation in derivation and inflection. In this section, the Dimasa caus ative suffix ri and plural suffix rao will be discussed. In the BodoGar o languages, reduplication is widely used to emphasize or to convey the adverbial sense of a lexical item. Hence, we also investigate the reduplication of nouns and adjectives in Dim asa in this section. The ri s uffix The ri suffix in Dimasa is used to causativize verbs in the language as demonstrated in Example 5 6 from Singha (2001) th + r thr (5 6) die + caus to kill In this study, causativization with the ri suffix was investigated both in monosyllables and disyllables. The aim of this investigation was to find out the tonal changes in derivational and inflectional processes. To construct a list of inflectional and derivational constructions, a few Dimasa v erbs were chosen from the word list ( A ppendix A ) and subsequently suffixed with the ri suffix The derived forms were presented to a native speaker of Dimasa who checked them for their grammaticality. Finally, f ift y grammatically plausible derivations were selected for this study by the native speaker. The eight native speakers of Dimasa who participated in this study were asked to produce the derived forms in a sentence frame ( Example 5 7) This sentence frame was also used for monosyllables of Dimasa The speech data was recorded for acoustic analyses. angR X thiFbaF (5 7) I target say -PST.1 I said X

PAGE 93

93 The / u/ set of syllables with a rising tone lead s to the meaning of to beat whereas, / u/ with a falling tone would mean measure. T he pitch track of the two underived / u/ syllables produced in a sentence frame show this distinction clearly (Figure 5 1) Figure 5 1. Average normalized pitch track of the pitch of / u/ syllables produced in underi ved conditions by all speakers T he / u/ set of syllables are produced with the suffix ri deriving the causativized form s of the two verbs (Figure 5 2) In case of the causativization of the / u/ set of syllables, it can be noticed that the root of the causativized words retain their tonal specification The / u/ for beat is assigned a rising contour and the one for measure is assigned a falling contour. On the other hand, suffixes are assigned with falling tones. In other words, the roots retain their inherent tonal specification but suffixes are assigned a falling pitch contour. P itch tracks of /khai/ syllables produced in a sentence frame in an underived condition demonstrate that the /khai/ for run is assig ned a rising tone and the /kh ai/ for rub is assigned a 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 beat measure

PAGE 94

94 falling tone ( Figure 5 4). T he /kh ai/ set of syllables are also affixed with the causative suffix ri I t is noticed that in spite of being affixed with the causative suffix ri the roots retain their tonal specifications and the suffix is associated with a falling tone (Figure 5 4). Fig ure 5 2. Average normalized pitch track of / u/ syllables produced with the suffix ri by all speakers T he pitch tracks of the disyllabic entry /goron/ meaning to confuse and company in an underived condition are also examined (Figure 5 5) The initial syllables of the disyllabic entries are assigned with a mid level tone whereas, the second syllables ar e assigned two distinct tones namely, rising and falling. As discussed in Chapter 4, the initial syllables of the two /goron/ disyllables are not statistically significantly different from each other H owever, the second syllables do have statistical sig nificance between them. In other words, in disyllabic /goron/ a speaker obtains the tonal cue for the identification of the word from the second syllable of the disyllabic entry. This set of syllables was also used to test tonal changes in disyllabic words in Dimasa. The /goron/ syllables were affixed with the suffix ri 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 beat measure / u/ / i/

PAGE 95

95 It is observed from that the second syllables of the two derivations demonstrate two different pitch tracks (Figure 5 6). However, the first and the third syllables are assigned a level and a falling tone respectively. Figure 53. Pitch track of /kh ai/ syllables in underived conditions To confirm this observation a test of variance on the syllables of each of the derived words was conducted (Figure 56). A Bonferroni post hoc test was c onducted to compar e the initial, medial and final syllables of the two separate instances of the /goron/ syllables The results of the Bonferroni test (Table 51) show that t he average F0d of the /go/ syllables for meet and confuse are not significantly different from each other (Bonferroni adjusted p> 0.003). In other words, it is not possible for native speakers to distinguish between two meanings this set of syllables just by depending on the first syllable of the words. This result also reflects the tone assignment pattern in Dimasa disyllables. 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 rub run

PAGE 96

96 Figure 54. Pitch track of /kh ai/ syllables with causative ri Fig ure 5 5. Averaged and n ormalized pitch track of /goron/ in underived condition produced by all speakers 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 rub run 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 company confuse /go/ /ron/ /k h ai/ /ri/

PAGE 97

97 In the case of the second syllable /ron /, the difference in mean F0d for the two words is statistically significant ( Bonferroni adjusted p <0.003) As far as the suffix /ri/ is concerned it does not demonstrated any significant difference in terms of mean F0d for the two words ( Bonferroni adjusted p > 0.003) These results demonstrate that for the two representations of the /goron/ syllable s, despite being associated with a suffix, the underlying tonal specification of the two words are retain ed. Hence, it can be concluded from the above discussion that the ri causative suffix in Dimasa is underlyingly assigned a falling tone. In cases where the ri suffix is associated with a root, the underlying tonal representation of the root is retained. This phenomenon is quite similar to the ho type of causative suffixes in Bodo as seen in Sarmah (2004) where ho is underlyingly specified with a low (falling) tone. Figure 56. Averaged and n ormalized /goron/ set of syllables with the suffix ri as produced by all speakers Table 51. Bonferroni test for F0d of the three syllables Groups Difference Statistic Prob > Value /go/ 3.813 2.161 0.037 /ron/ 5.566 3.207 0.003 /ri/ 8.573 1.983 0.054 /go/ /ron/ /ri/

PAGE 98

98 Sarmah (2004) a rgues that the ho in Bodo is derived from a lexical entry and hence operates as a causative clitic in the language. Later, confirming this argument, a native speaker of Bodo confirmed that /ho/ is a lexical entry in Bodo meaning gi ve .18 In the case of Dimasa, further inspection into the collected data from the Dimasa speakers revealed that the causative suffix ri is also a lexical word meaning give T he pitch track of /ri/ give clearly indicates a low falling contour (Figure 5 7,) Hence, it can be argued that the suffix ri is a derived from the lexical word /ri/ for give Figure 5 7. Pitch track of /ri/ give The rao S uffix The rao suffix in Dimasa is a plural marking suffix. It can be assigned to a variety of nouns with a [+human] property to pluralize as in Example 5 8 and Example 59. In Example 5 8 the rao suffix is assigned to the word for father and in Example 59 it is assigned to male. 18 This fact emerged from a native speaker of Bodo in a question answer session after Prof. Robbins Burlings presentation at NEILS 2 held i n Guwahati in February, 2007. 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 give

PAGE 99

99 bab + ra bab ra (5 8) father + pl. fathers (5 9) male+ pl. males As this suffix is associated with a noun with restrictive conditions, in this study only a few instances of words inflected with the ra o suffix were found. In the following discussion, the rao suffix affixed with two disyllabic entries are specifically discussed. T he pitch track s of the uninflected disyllabic entry /baba/ father (Figure 5 8) shows that the initial syllable of the /baba/ disyllable is associated with a mid level to ne and the final syllable is associated with a falling tone. As discussed in C hapter 4, in Dimasa, the pitch on the second syllable of a disyllabic entry provides the cue for categorization of the disyllabic word into a tonal category. In other words, in Dimasa the tone on the initial syllable of a disyllabic entry is always a mid l evel tone, however the second syllables are assigned contrastive tones for association of a d isyllabic entry with a meaning. Fig ure 58. Normalized pitch track of /baba/ father produced in uninflected condition 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 baba 'father' ba ba

PAGE 100

100 T he rao suffix is assoc iated with the disyllabic entry /baba/ and tested for changes in the tones of the disyllabic entry It is noticed that (Figure 59), the inherent tonal specification of the /baba/ syllables (meaning father) does not change with the addition of the plural suffix rao. Similarly in the pitch track of the uninflected disyllable /miya/ male in the initial syllable is assigned a mid level tone and the final syllable is assigned a rising tone (Figure 5 10) T he initial mid level tone is the default tone that is assigned to any initial syllable of Dimasa disyllables. However, the rising tone assigned on the second syllable is the phonemically assigned tone that conveys the semantics of the disyllable to a Dimas a speaker. A comparison of the pitch tracks of the two different /miya/ syllables makes the claims further apparent. T he pitch track of the initial syllables in both cases does not seem to be significantly different. T hese pitch tracks are indicators of m id level tone However, in case of the second syllables, the pitch track of male indicates a rising tonal category (Figure 5 10) whereas, the pitch tracks for yesterday clearly demonstrates a falling tone contour (Figure 5 11) Figure 59. Normalized pith track of /baba/ affixed with plural marker rao 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 babarao ba ba rao

PAGE 101

101 Fig ure 5 10. Normalized pitch track of /miya/ male disyllable in uninflected environment Figure 5 11. Normalized pitch track of /miya/ yesterday in uninflected environment 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 male 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 yesterday ya mi ya mi

PAGE 102

102 In case of /miya/ male is affixed with the plural marker rao ( Figure 5 12 ) T he initial syllable of the inflected word /miyarao/ is assigned mid level tone. The second syllable is assigned a rising tone, wh ereas the suffix rao is assigned a falling tone. From the discussion above, it is clear that the plural suffix ra o in Dimasa has its own underlying tonal specification and in cases where it is associated with a root, the tonal specification of the root is not altered. Hence, in case of Dimasa plural markers, it can be assumed that they operate as separate lexical items with underlying lexical tones associated with them. Figure 512. Normalized pitch track of /miya/ male assigned plural suffix rao Reduplication Dimasa uses reduplication for a variety of purposes. Dimasa reduplication may occur in order to emphasize, pluralize and adverbialize specific lexical items. For example in E xample 510 and Example 511 reduplication is use d to emphasize a lexical item in Dimasa .19 19 In the examples of reduplications here, it is not clear whether it is a rightward reduplication or a leftward reduplication. However, considering the fact that Dimasa prefers suffixation, it is assumed that the syllables on the right are the reduplicated forms. 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 miyarao 'men' rao ya mi

PAGE 103

103 khase + khase khasekhase (5 10) small small small ( emph ) In the example below reduplication is used to pluralize a noun in Dimasa: noli + noli noli noli (5 11) village village villages Example 5 12 shows formation of adverbs from adjectives by means of reduplication in Dimasa: rab + rab rabrab (5 12) slight slight slightly In order to test the reduplications, in this study initially Dimasa words in their non reduplicated forms are analyzed first. Later, the speakers were asked to produce the corresponding reduplicated forms in a sentence frame that was used with monosyllables and disyllables. In the sections below, we analyze the reduplication of the words /khase/ T he pi tch track of /khase/ small (Figure 5 13) produced by Dimasa speakers demonstrates that e ven though the initial syllable demonstrates a falling contour, it can be considered as a phonetic variation of the midlevel tone in Dimasa. In C hapter 3 it has bee n shown that in Dimasa the aspirated onset s tends to affect the following pitch contour resulting in a falling contour for level tones and high level contour for rising tones. The second syllable is assigned the phonemic falling tone of the Dimasa languag e (Figure 513) Hence the tonal representation on the word /khase/ for small is /khaMseF/ where the mid tone on the initial syllable is the default tone that is assigned to any initial syllable of a Dimasa disyllabic entry. The falling tone on the second syllable is lexical tone that was underlyingly specified with the word /khT he pitch tracks of the /k ase/ for small. hasekhase/ slowly ( Figure 5 14), the reduplicated form of /khase/ is shows that the initial three syllables of the reduplicated /khase/ is assigned the mid level tone of Dimasa, whereas the final syllable is assigned a lexical falling tone. In other words, in the

PAGE 104

104 reduplicated form, only the final syllable is allowed a lexical tone, whereas the initial three syllables are assigned the default mid tone. This is a tone assignment pattern noticed in Bodo where only the rightmost syllable is allowed a lexical tone. Figure 513. Pitch track of /kh ase/ small produced individually in a sentence frame Figure 514. Pitch track of reduplicated /khFrom the discussion above, it can be conclude d that in Dimasa reduplication, the tonal specification of the constituent of the reduplicated form is retained only on the final or the rightmost syllable of the reduplicated form. The preceding syllables are specified with a default ase/ 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 khase 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 khasekhase k h a se k h a k h a se se

PAGE 105

105 mid level tone. This implies that Dimasa, like many other Tibeto Burman languages of North East India, is a word tone language where only one lexical tone is assigned per word. Rabh a The Bodo Garo languages have shown interesting tonal transfer phenomena in derived polysyllables (Bhattacharya 1977, Sarmah 2004). Hence, in this study Rabha underived words were used with suffixes to see if there is any change in the stem of the derived word after a suffix has been added. As mentioned in Chapter 1 Rabha has a wide variety of suffixes but a limited number of prefixes.The Rabha suffixes discussed in this chapter are three nominalizers namely, kai brok and dam. They are used to nominali ze Rabha verbs as shown in Example 5 13 to Example 5 15.20The kai S uffix r ng + ka rengka (5 13) to go nom. the act of going pr + brk pribrk (5 14) to buy nom. buyer phr + dm phardm (5 15) to sell nom. shop The kai suffix is used in Rabha to nominalize verbs. In this study nominalization of the verbs /reng/ to go, /rung/ to drink, /si/ to die, /tan/ to cut and /tong/ to sta y is investigated. A set of tonally distinct roots were selected for this test. T he pitch track of the underived verb /reng/ is assigned a falling tone in Rabha (Figure 5 15) Similarly, t he pitch track of the underived verb /rung/ shows a rising tone associated with the syllable in Rabha (Figure 5 16). These two verbs are no minalized and the tone assignment pattern in their nominalized forms is examines (Figure 5 17 and Figure 518). 20 The accented tone markings here are following tone marking convention of Basumatary (2004)

PAGE 106

106 Figure 515. Pitch track of /reng/ The pitch track of the derived form of the verb /reng/ shows that the root /reng/ loses its tonal specification and becomes almost a level tone that is found in Rabha ( Figure 5 17) However, the suffix kai is underlyingly assigned a falling tone that is retained in the derived form of the word /reng/. Similarly the pitch track of derivation of /rung/ is shows that a s with /reng/, when attached to the nominalizing suffix kai /rung/ loses its underlying tonal representation and is assigned a mid level tone (Figure 5 18). However, the suffix kai retains its underlying falling tone as with the suffix kai in the nominal derivation of /reng/. Similar to these two examples, it is noticed that /tongkai/ derived from /tong/ with a falling tone also follows a similar pattern (Figure 5 19). The root /tong/ in the derived form loses its tonal specification (falling) and is assigned a level tone and the suffix kai retains a falling tone. Even though the kai suffix neutralizes the tone of the root and retains its tonal specification. 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 reng

PAGE 107

107 Figure 516. Pitch track of /rung/ Fig ure 517. Pitch track of derived /rengkai/ Figure 5 18. Pitch track of derived /rungkai/ 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 rung 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 rengkai 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 rungkai /reng/ /kai/ /rung/ /kai/

PAGE 108

108 Figure 519. Pitch track of derived /tongkai/ Hence, from the examples above it can be concluded that suffixation with the nominal suffix kai makes the roots lose their underlying tonal specifications and they are assigned a mid level tone which is the default tone in Rabha. However, the suffix kai is inherentl y specified a falling tone and in nominal derivations the inherent tonal specification of the suffix is retained. The dam Suffix Rabha uses the dam suffix to nominalize both verbs and nouns. For example, dam is used as a suffix with the verb /phar/ to sell to make the verb a nominal /phardam/ meaning shop. At the same time, dam can be used with the noun /par/ flower to become /pardam/ meaning garden. In this study the nominalization in /bar/ fire, /par/ flower, /khar/ to work, /phar/ to sell and /trung/ to learn are investigated. T he pitch track of underived /phar/ is shows that the lexical item is assigned a rising tone (Figure 5 20) However, in the derived condition /phardam/, the tonal specification of a rising tone in /ph ar/ is lo st ( Figure 521) and it is assigned a mid level tone; whereas, the suffix dam is assigned a rising tone. 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 tongkai /tong/ /kai/

PAGE 109

109 Similarly, the verb /trung/ is assigned a falling tone (Figure 5 22) However, when attached to the suffix dam ( Figure 523), the underlying tonal spe cification of /trung/ is lost and it is assigned a level tone. The suffix dam as with the case of /phardam/, is assigned a rising tone. Hence, as with the kai type of nominal suffixes the dam suffixes also neutralize the tone of the stem and assign the s tem with a default mid tone. However, the dam suffixes are inherently specified with a rising tone and they retain th e rising tone in the derivation but the tone in the root is lost and the root is assigned a default midlevel tone. Figure 5 20. Pitch tr ack of /phar/ Figure 521. Pitch track of derived /phardam/ 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 phar 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 phardam /p h ar/ /dam/

PAGE 110

110 Figure 522. Pitch track of underived /trung/ Figure 523. Pitch track of derived /trungdam/ 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 trung 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 trungdam /trung/ /dam/

PAGE 111

111 Figure 5 24. Pitch track of /phar/ The brok S uffix The brok suffixes also nominalize a verb in Rabha. They can be used with a variety of Rabha verbs. In this study the brok suffixes attached to the Rabha words /pri/ to buy, /sa/ to eat, /phar/ to sell and /chi/ to see. T he underived word /phar/ i s associated with a rising tone in Rabha (Figure 5 24). However, when attached to the suffix brok the stem / phar/ is assigned a mid level tone and the suffix brok is assigned a rising tone (Figure 5 25). Simmilary in case of /chi/ in an underived position is assigned a falling tone (Figure 5 26) In other words, the underlyingly /chi/ is associated with a falling tone. However when suffixed by the suffix brok ,. /chi/ loses its underlying tonal specification. While brok is assigned a rising tone, the root /chi/ is assigned a level tone ( Figure 5 27). As in case of the dam suffix, brok also neutralizes the tone of the stem while retaining its own tonal specification. 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 phar

PAGE 112

112 Figure 525. Pitch track of derived /pharbrok/ Fig ure 526. Pitch track of /chi/ Figure 5 27. Pitch track of derived /chibrok/ 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 pharbrok 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 chi 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 chibrok /p h ar/ /brok/ /chi/ /brok/

PAGE 113

113 Hence, from the above discussion it can be concluded that all nominal suffixes in Rabha are underlyingly specified with a lexical tone. When these suffixes are attached to a stem, the tonal specification of the stems is neutralized and the tonal specification of the suffix is retained. Among the suffixes that were examined in this study, none was underlyingly assigned a midlevel tone. However, that may be becau se of the small number of suffixes examined in this study. I accept this limitation as a gap in this study. Discussion This chapter demonstrates the tone assignment patterns in Dimasa and Rabha derived polysyllables. From the discussion above, it is evident that Dimasa suffixes in the discussion follow a tone assignment pattern as in the type III derivations in Bodo. In type III derivations of Bodo, the suffixes are underlyingly assigned a lexical tone. When the suffixes are affixed to a stem, the inherent tonal specification of the stem is still retained. In Dimasa as in Bodo, every prosodic word is assigned one and only one lexical tone. Here the prosodic word is used in the sense of Selkirk (1980) and Peperkamp (1999) where prosodic words are defined as the domain of word stress, phonotactics and segmental wordlevel rules Hence, in case of Dimasa suffixation it can be argued that both the stem and the suffix surface as two separate prosodic words thereby conforming to the phonological rule of Dimasa (and Bodo) that one prosodic word be assigned one lexical tone. The Dimasa tone assignment pattern can be explained with the template in Example 5 16. T T ( 516) [stem] [suffix] However, in case of Dimasa reduplication, it is observed that reduplicated form follows the tone assignment pattern that is similar to the tone assignment pattern of Dimasa disyllables. The prwd prwd

PAGE 114

114 reduplicated forms of words are assigned a lexical tone on the rightmost syllable. The preceding syllables are assigned a mid default tone. It can be concluded that Dimasa reduplicated polysyllables are considered a single prosodic word, which is the domain of tone assignment. Hence, only one lexical tone is assigned in this domain. This phenomenon can be demonstrated in the template in example 5 17. T T T (5 17) prwd prwd prwd On the other hand, the Rabha data discussed in the sections above demonstrate a distinct pattern of tone assignment. In case of Rabha, as in Dimasa the suffixes are underlyingly specified with a tone. However, unlike Dimasa the stems lose their underlying tonal specification in the derived form. In other words, in Rabha the derived polysyllables are treated as single prosodic words that conform to the phonological rule that each prosodic word is assigned only one lexical tone. At the same time, underlying lexical tones of Rabha suffixes are retained in the derived form. Hence, Rabha derived words show the morphological construction as shown in Example 5 18. T1 T2 T2 (5 18) | | | stem suffix [stem + suffix] prwd

PAGE 115

115 CHAPTER 6 OPTIMALITY THEORETIC AL ACCOUNT OF DIMASA AND RABHA TONES In this chap ter tone a ssignment in Rabha and Dimasa will be discussed from a theoretical perspective. Considering its functionality, an Optimality Theoretical (OT) analysis of the tonal phenomena in these languages is developed in this chapter. The optimality theoretical account proposed for the underived words in Dimasa and Rabha in this study are identical to each other. In case of derived polysyllables, similar constraints and their rankings are proposed for both Dimasa and Rabha. However, it was noticed that the two language s differ in their prosodic structures, where separate morphological accounts of prosodic structures act as a vital tool in making a unified optimality theoretical account functional. Even though OT allows assignment of prosodic structure from input to output distinctively for different languages, that approach is beyond the scope of the current study. Optimality Theory Optimality Theory (Prince and Smolensky 1993, McCarthy and Prince 1993a, b) is a nonderivational model of Generative Grammar where the output results from the simultaneous application of constraints to the input. Two formal mechanisms in O ptimality Theory GEN and EVAL mediate the relationship between inputs and outputs. GEN assigns possible structure to the input, and EVAL applies the c onstraint hierarchy to select the best candidate among those created by GEN. The grammar of a specific language ranks the constraints, which belong to universal grammar. The variation among different languages is addressed by re ranking the universal const raints. Unlike earlier theories that assumed variations across languages to be the result of parametric selection of rules or constraints, O ptimality T heory asserts that all constraints are present in all languages, the only difference being in the ranking of the constraints.

PAGE 116

116 Optimality t heory has a set of constraints called the Faithfulness Constraints, which preserve the input forms. To preserve different aspects of the input form, OT has different types of Faithfulness Constraints. However, the strength of the desire to preserve the input form varies from language to language. That variation can be taken care of by the ranking of the Faithfulness Constraints relative to other constraints in the language On the other hand the existence of the Markedness C onstraints depends on cross linguistic evidence to avoid specific features or structures. These constraints account for segmental inventories syllable structure s and phonological alternations in short, any aspect of linguistic phenomena, be it phonologic al, morphological or syntactic. The Faithfulness Constraints make sure that the specification of the input is preserved in the output, whereas Markedness Constraints try to sele ct a candidate that decreases the markedness of the representation. Constraint ranking chooses the best candidate among many possible outputs. OT evaluates an infinite set of candidate output forms generated by GEN on an input. The winning candidate is the optimal one as it incurs least serious violations among a set of ranked constr aints. The constraint hierarchy in this case is C1>>C2: where C1 is a higher ranked constraint than C2. Table 61. Ranking of constraints in optimality t heory /INPUT/ C 1 C 2 a. candidate a b. candidate b *! = violation = fatal violation = the most suitable candidate shaded cells no longer matter because a higher ranked constraint has made the decision T he outputs can be listed vertically in any order while the constraints are listed horizontally. I n Table 6 1, candidate a and candidate b are two possibilities (among the infinite set) generated by GEN. A solid line separates the constraints C1 and C2 indicating strict domination. Candidate a satisfies constraint C1 but violates constraint C2 (indicated by a ).

PAGE 117

117 However Candidate b violates constraint C1 and it satisfies constraint C2. Nevertheless, the violation or satisfaction of constraint C2 does not matter anymore, as C2 is a lower ranked constraint; moreover the higher ranked constraint C1 has already made the choice clear. The constraint hierarchy assumes that the violation of C1 is much more serious (indicated by *!) than the violation of C2. The violation of C2 is irrelevant if C1 is violated. Hence Candidate B cannot emerge as a suitable output (a s it violates constraint C1). Therefore Candidate A e merges as the optimal output as indicated by a (even though it may violate C2). Optimality Theoretical Account of Tones Yip (2002) is an attempt at an OT analysis of tonal phonology. She proposes a f ew constraints pertaining to tone that are primarily based on the already existing constraints for segments She lists a few modifications of the wellformedness conditions for tones proposed by Goldsmith (1976): Tones are usually associated with syllables but not always Syllables are usually associated with tones, but not always Association is preferably one to one, but not always Tone (especially H tone) is attracted to prominent positions (beginnings of things, edges, accented or stressed syllables) but not always. All these can be true in some but not all languages. Each of these can be stated as a violable markedness constraint. They are expressed by Yip (2002) as follows: *FLOAT: A tone must be associated with a Tone Bearing Unit (TBU). This constrai nt makes sure that an output like the following is not selected where tone T3 is not associated with a TBU: | | T1 T2 T SPECIFY T : A TBU must be associated with a tone. This constraint rejects an output like the following, as the second syllable is not specified with a tone: 3 | | T1 T 2

PAGE 118

118 NOCONTOUR: A TBU may be associated with at most one tone. This constraint rejects an output where a TBU is associated with more than one tone: T 1 T 2 NOLONG T: A tone may be associated with at most one TBU. Hence an output like the one shown below is to be avoided: ALIGN -TONE: Align the specified edge (L/R) of a tone span with the head or edge (L/R) of a prosodic or morphological unit. For example, this constraint prefers the rightmost syllable of a word to be associated with a tone I t would prefer only the following structur e: T | In non derived lexical items Bodo prefers this structure as the tone is linked to the rightmost syllable: T go ba | T DEPT : No insertion of tones. This constraint restricts the insertion of a new tone in the output form. If a new tone is inserted then the output is considered to be violating this constraint. Apart from these markedness constraints there are some general faithfulness constraints that preserve underlying contrasts of tone quality and placement as described in Yip (2002): MAXT : No deletion of tones. This constraint prevents the deletion of a tone present in input. *ASSOCIATE: No new association lines. This constraint restricts a tone from attaching to a new TBU in the output. It makes tones stay in their original position. *DISASSOCIATION: No removal of association lines. This constraint makes sure that a tone association stays in its original position. It prevents a tone fr om disassociating with the TBU it is associated with in input.

PAGE 119

119 NOFUSION: Separate underlying tones must stay separate. Hence, two or more tones cannot come together and be attached to a single TBU. IDENTT : Correspondent tones are the same. The correspondence of tones in the output is as it is in the input. This constraint makes sure that the type of tone in the input cannot be changed in the output. For example, IDENTT makes sure that a L(ow) tone in the input does not change to a H(igh) tone in the output. LINEARITY: Preserve underlying linear order. The order in which tones occur in the output is the same as it is in the input. Yip attempts to capture Goldsmiths observations about the preference for contours and plateaux at the right edge of the word. Goldsmith calls it leftto right association. In OT Yip captures Goldsmiths observation with the help of alignment constraints like the ones shown below: ALIGNL : Each T should align with the left edge of the domain (gradiently assessed) This constrain t prevents a tone from occurring anywhere except the left edge of the word so that an output like | is preferred, not | ALIGN R CONTOUR: Contour tones should align with the right edge of the domain. Therefore in Mende : T T ny h ny h | |\ is possible, but / \ | is not possible. OCP : Adjacent identical elements are prohibited. Leben (1973) proposed the Obligatory Cont our Principle (OCP), which says that words with sequences of high toned syllables must be represented as in (a), not as in (b): T T T T T T According to Yip, tone is also subject to more general phonological conditions such as the Obligatory Contour Principle (OCP), locality, and markedness constraints: a. NOT b. NOGAP: Multiply linked tones cannot skip TBUs. A set of TBUs, which are linked by only one tone cannot leave a TBU in the middle unspecified with a tone. Hence, | | | H H H H

PAGE 120

120 is possible, but not LOCAL: Spread only to the adjacent items. When an association changes the new association line is formed associating the adjacent item. Hence, for the input H H | the output can be and not General markedness : *R, *F>>*M This constraint shows there is a preference for mid tones over rising and falling tones in the languages in the current analysis. The rising and the falling tone s are more marked than the mid tone. H H H It is worth mentioning again that in OT all the constraints are universal and present in the grammars of all languages. If a constraint is very low ranked it is assumed that its effects are not visible and hence will no t be discussed. Nevertheless it is to be assumed that the constraints exist in all languag es even if their effects are not seen in some languages. Tones in Dimasa and Rabha In this section an Optimality Theoretical account of Dimasa and Rabha tones is proposed assuming the facts from Chapter 3 through 5 on tone assignment in the two languages in monosyllables, disyllables and morphological derivations. Lexical Tone Inventory in Dimasa and Rabha In Chapter 3 and Chapter 4 it has been argued that every nonde rived lexical entry in Rabha and Dimasa must be specified with one of the three lexical tones namely, rising (R), mid level (M) and falling (F ), in the two languages. Goldsmith (1976), Yip (1991) and many subsequent studies have proposed that contour tones in languages are necessarily combinations of level tones, viz. high and low tones. One of the primary reasons behind this claim is the observation that in tone shifts or tone spreading only the level part of a contour tone is spread. This may be well founded in some languages; however, in the Bodo group of languages, for

PAGE 121

121 example in Bodo, it has been noticed that the contour tone can shift in its entirety to local tonal domain (Sarmah, 2004). For example, in Bodo when the underived word Mthang+H is assi gned a high rising co ntour on the rightmost syllable, the initial syllable is assigned a mid default tone (Figure 6 1) .21 However, when the word Mthang+ R is associated with a plural suffix mon the rising tone is shifts to the plural suffix in its entirety and preceding syllables are assigned mid default tones (Figure 6 2). A ccording to Bodo morphophonemics, the plural suffix is not underlyingly associated with any tone, and in the surface form it is associated with the lexical tone of the stem. Not e that in this case the entire tone contour is shifted to the plural suffix and hence, an analysis where contour tones are considered combinations of level high and low tones will be inappropriate for the Bodo group of languages. F igure 6 1. Pitch track 21 In these examples the tone marking conventions from Sarmah (2004) is followed where +H indicates a high rising tone and M i ndicates a mid default tone. n o ng th a ng 75 175 100 120 140 160 Time (s) 0 0.56

PAGE 122

122 Figure 6 2. Pitch track of you (hon., plural) In other words, the tone shift in Bodo can be described as in Example 6 1, where the entire high rising tone shifts to the following syllable. However, a r epresentation as in Example 62 is unmotivated and complicated for a case like the one with Bodo tone shifting. R (6 1) | L H (6 2) Hence, it is pertinent that one considers contour tones as a single tonemic unit in BodoGaro languages, rather than considering them to be combinations of register tones. F ollowing conclusions about the tone assignment pattern in Dimasa and Rabha have been arrived at: n o ng th a ng m o n 75 175 100 120 140 160 Time (s) 0 0.661995

PAGE 123

123 (a) In both Dimasa and Rabha, a nonderived lexical item must be specified with one of the lexical tones present in the grammar of the language. (b) A tone bearing unit (TBU) without a lexica l tone is produced with a default mid level tone. (c) The rightmost syllable of an underived disyllable is produced with a lexical tone whereas the initial syllable is produced with a mid default tone. (d) Suffixes are underlyingly specified with a lexical tone an d in derivations the tonal specification of the suffix is retained. (e) While the suffixes retain their underlying tonal specification, in the case of Dimasa, the stem also retains its underlying tonal specification. However, in the case of Rabha, the stem los es its underlying tonal specification and is produced with a middefault tone. Considering the facts above, the following constraints are used for an OT analysis of tone assignment in Dimasa and Rabha: Tonal faithfulness constraints DEPT : No insertion of tones. MAXT : No deletion of tones. *ASSOCIATE: No new association lines. *DISASSOCIATION: No removal of association lines. NOFUSION: Separate underlying tones must stay separate. IDENTT : Correspondent tones are the same. LINEARITY: Preserve underlying li near order. Tones also take into account more general phonological conditions like the Obligatory Contour Principle (OCP), locality, and markedness constraints. The f ollowing are the constraints that we consider significant in the OT analysis of tones in Dimasa and Rabha. Tonal markedness constraints OCP : Adjacent identical elements are prohibited.

PAGE 124

124 NOGAP: Multiply linked tones cannot skip TBUs. LOCAL: Spread only to the adjacent items. *FLOAT: A tone must be associated with a TBU. SPECIFY T : A TBU must be associated with a tone. NOLONG T : A tone may be associated with at most one TBU. CRISPALIGN -TONE R : Each T should align with the right edge of the domain. A Lexical Item Must be Specified with a T one As described in C hapters 3 and Chapter 4, both Dimasa and Rabha non derived lexical items are underlyingly specified with a lexical tone. They are specified with the rising (R), mid level (M) or a falling (F) tone on a single syllable. It is observed that nonderived lexical items must retain the underlying tonal specification in the output. It is also not possible to have nonderived lexical entry without being specified with a lexical tone. Hence the markedness constraint SPECIFY T (LT, PRWD) is ranked high in the two languages that makes sure that every pr osodic word (PRWD) is specified with a lexical tone (LT).E very nonderived Dimasa and Rabha lexical entry is associated with a lexical tone and there is no possibility that a rising (R) or a falling tone (F) is inserted into the output form. However, a mid (M) tone may be inserted in the output form in case a syllable is not underlyingly specified with a lexical tone. Hence, the constraint ranking *R, *F >> *M is used in this analysis. DEP T is ranked low in the in the two languages as there is a possibility of a mid tone insertion in case a syllable is not underlyingly specified with a lexical tone. This constraint rules out the following possibilities: | | | L T LT L T | T

PAGE 125

125 In the previous chapters we also observed that the underlying lexical tones of Dimasa and Rabha are specified on the rightmost syllable. Again, in morphological derivations it was observed that the right edge of a derived polysyllabic lexical entry is spec ified with a lexical tone. Hence the constraint CRISPALIGNR (PRWD, LT) is proposed to be active that makes sure that the right edge of the domain in a prosodic word is aligned with a lexical tone. It prohibits the following situations: | | LT LT | LT LT LT The grammar of Dimasa and Rabha rules out any possibility of a lexical item being specified with a lexical tone, anywhere except the right edge of t he domain. Hence an input, which, for example, has its left edge specified with an underlying tone, loses its left edged tonal specification in the output. This results in the violation of the tonal faithfulness constraint MAXT, which restricts the deletion of tones. As Dimasa and Rabha allow this violation in derived polysyllables, MAXT is considered to be a low r anked constraint compared to some other constraints. Following is the violation of this constraint: | | | | LT LT LT As every prosodic domain in Dimasa and Rabha has to be associated with a lexical tone, the constraint SPECIFY T is highly ranked in the constraint hierarchy. Similarly, it is no t possible

PAGE 126

126 for rising and falling tones to be inserted in the output form. However, it is possible that a midlevel tone is inserted in the output form in a TBU that is not specified with a lexical tone. Hence, the constraint *R, *F >> *M is also highly ra nked in the two languages that restricts the insertion of rising or falling tones, but allows the insertion of default mid level tones. As discussed in the previous chapters, the midlevel tone in the two languages behaves as a default tone in the two lang uages. As CRISPALIGNR (PRWD, LT) may lead to the deletion of tones, MAXT is ranked lower than the former. However, MAXT is ranked above *R, *F >> *M, so that the latter does not replace even the lexically specified rising and falling tones with mid ton es. Hence, the fina l constraint ranking of these constraints can be represented as: SPECIFY T CRISPALIGNR (PRWD, LT) IDENTT >> MAXT >> *R, F >> DEP T *M Table 62. Gen eral constraint ranking for Dimasa INPUT ho ba SPECIFYT F CRISP ALIGN R (PRWD, LT) IDENT T MAX T *R,*F *M DEP T a. ho ba | F *! b. ho ba | | R F *! **! c ho ba | | F F *! **! d ho ba | | M M *! *! ** ** d. | | M F T he disyllabic input /hoba/ is specified with one lexical tone on the second syllable (Table 62) However, the initial syllable is not specified with any tone in input. Hence, candidate a) violates the higher ranked constraint SPECIFY T ruling out it out of being the winning output in the presence of a better candidate. In case of candidate b) a risi ng tone is assigned to the initial

PAGE 127

127 syllable. Hence, candidate b) violates this high ranked constraint IDENTT A s a n R tone is inserted, it violates the lower ranked *R, *F constraint. It also violates the lower ranked DEP constraint which functionally does not have any effect on the outcome of the optimal candidate here. Similarly, in case of candidate c), a F(alling) tone is inserted to the initial syllable of the input. I t violates the *R, *F constraint and in absence of other higher ranked violations t he *R, *F violation is fatal for candidate c). It also violates the lower ranked DEP constraint. Candidate d) is specified with an M tone on both the syllables. Hence, the F tone of the input does not have any identical element in the output making candidate d) violate the higher ranked IDENTT constraint. As the tone in the input is deleted this candidate also fatally violates MAXT Here, candidate e ) emerges as the winner as the lexical tone is on the rightmost syllable of the lexical entry satisfying the higher ranked CRISPALIGNR (PRWD, LT). To satisfy the SPECIFY T constraint, the default mid level tone is inserted in the initial syllable of the entry .22Optimality Theor etical Treatment of Dimasa Tones This insertion violates the lower ranked constraints *M and DEP T. As it violates *R, F only once (by allowing the insertion of a M tone), it is not a fatal violation. Hence, the *R, F constraint makes sure that only one lexical tone is allowed in the output. However, as both of them are lower ranked constraints their violation does not affect the outcome in this case. In this section the constraint ranking proposed in the previous section is used on Dima sa examples. In the following example, the disyllabic input of Dimasa is specified with a rising tone. Considering the constraint hierarchy proposed above the T able 63 demonstrates the choice of the optimal output in Dimasa: 22 Here we assume that the mid tone (M) operates in two ways. As observed in the previous chapters, the mid level tone can be assigned in the underlying form where it is regarded as an underlying lexical tone. However, in cases where a TBU is underlyingly unspecified, the mid level tone operates as a default tone assigning itself to the unspecified TBU and hence, satisfying the SPECIFY T constraint. In other words, even though phonetically similar, the mid level tone can be funct ionally very distinct.

PAGE 128

128 Table 63. Optimality t heory tableaux for Dimasa INPUT [mai thai] SPECIFYT R CRISP ALIGN R (PRWD, LT) IDENT T MAX T *R,*F *M DEP T a. *! [mai thai] | R *! b. [mai thai] | | R R **! c. [mai thai] R *! d. [mai thai] | | M R In Table 63, the input /maithai/ is underlyingly specified with a rising (R) tone. In the output candidate a), the underlying tone R is associated with the initial syllable of the lexical entry /maithai/. However, this candidate violates the constraint SPECIFY T as the second syllable of the lexical input is not specified with any tone. Moreover, candidate a) also violates CRISPALIGNR (PRWD, LT) as the lexical tone R is not assigned to the rightmost edge of the prosodic word. Similarly candidate b) is also implausible as it violates *R, F twice two R(ising) tone s are ins erted in the output. The R insertion here also violates the lower ranked DEP T const raint. In case of candidate c), the R tone is associated with both the syllables of the lexical entry. Hence it violates the CRISPALIGNR (PRWD, LT) constraint. It is also assumed here that the markedness constraint NOLONG T is also ranked high in Dimasa making candidate c) implausible. In candidate d), the underlying R tone is assigned to the rightmost syllable of the word and the leftmost syllable is assigned a mid level tone. As the underlying lexical tone R is associated with the rightmost syllable, CRISPALIGNR (PRWD, LT) is satisfied. At the same time, in

PAGE 129

129 the output form the leftmost syllable is assigned a default mid level tone satisfying the SPECIFY T constraint. However, it violates *R, F once, but considering other candidates, candidate d) has the least fatal violations. Similarly, candidate d) violates *M and DEP T constraints, as both of these constraints are lower ranked, they do not influence the outcome of candidate d) as the winning candidate. Hence, candidate d) emerges as the winning candidate in the OT analysis. However, in Dimasa suffixation, suffixes that are examined in C hapter 5 are underlyingly associated with a lexical tone. This phenomena is quite opposite than that of the noted morphophonological phenomena in Bodo (Sarmah, 2004) where, most of the suffixes and prefixes are not underlyingly specified with any tones. In Bodo, the inflected or derived polysyllables in a majority of cases operate as a single prosodic unit where according to the Bodo rules of tone assignment, a lexical tone is assigned on the rightmost syllable of the polysyllabic entry. In the following examples in Bodo this point is demonstrated clearly: +H M+H (6 3) you+ pl. you (pl) H M H nong nong prwd prwd pho+Lthang MphoLthang (6 4) pho(caus.)+sow seeds to make sow seeds M L pho thang prwd In the input /nong/ is associated with a high tone and the suffix /sor/ is not associated with any lexical tone. However, in the derived form, the high tone of the stem is spread to the tonologically underspecified suffix /sor/ and the stem loses its lexical tone specification resulting in the assignment of the de fault mid tone on the stem. In Dimasa, both the stem and the suffix

PAGE 130

130 behave as two separate prosodic units in the derived form. Hence, both the prosodic units retain their tonal specification in the output form. The association of suffixes to Dimasa words i s demonstrated in the examples below: shuF + riF shuFriF (6 5) measure + caus. to make to measure miyaM + + raoF miyaMraoF (6 6) m an + pl. men23 [ ] [ho] (6 7) prwd prwd L Hence, in this analysis the Dimasa suffixes are also considered as distinct prosodic words. As mentioned in C hapter 5, at least for the ri type of suffixes it has been shown that the suffix is actually derived from a lexical word /ri/ which means to give which explains why ri has its own tonal specification and why they can be considered as distinct prosodic words. Hence, the proposed constraint ranking also works for the derived words in Dimasa ( Table 64) In T able 64, the input [ baba ][rao] i s underlyingly specified with two lexical tones for each of the prosodic In case of Dimasa suffixation, the suffixes are considered as separate prosodic units separated from the stem of the derived word. This is phenomenon is quite similar to the Type III suffixation of Bodo demonstrated in Sarmah (2004) where the causative suf fix ho is underlyingly specified with a lexical low tone (L) and in derivations the tonal specification of the suffix in preserved along with the underlying tonal specification of the stem. Sarmah (2004) assumes that in the ho type of suffixation in Bodo both the suffix and the stem behave as two distinct prosodic words that can be morphologically represented as in Example 6 7. 23 There is no tone marking in the first syllable of /miya/ as the first syllable is not underlyingly specified with any tone. However, in the output the first syllable is assigned a mid level tone fulfilling the requirement for specifying a tone on every syllable of Dimasa.

PAGE 131

131 words. The prosodic unit [baba] is assigned the lexical falling (F) tone and the suffix [rao] is also underlyingly specified with a falling (F) tone. In case of candidate a), the pros odic unit [baba] is only specified on the right edge with a lexical tone; whereas the initial syllable is not specified with any lexical tones. Hence, it violates the high ranked SPECIFY T constraint making the candidate a) unfavorable as a plausible output. In case of candidate b) the lexical tonal specification of the prosodic word [baba] is entirely deleted. While it violates the lower ranked MAX constraint, it also violates the SPECIFY T constraint twice making b) implausible. In case of candidate c) the underlying tonal specifications of the stem and the suffix are preserved and the lexical mid level tone of the stem is associated with the right edge of the prosodic word [baba]. In the initial syllable of the prosodic word [baba] a midlevel tone i s associated as a default tone satisfying SPECIFY T and CRISPALIGNR (PRWD, LT) and *R, F Candidate c) violates DEP T and *M constraint. However, as both of them are low ranked constraint it does not affect the outcome of the analysis. Hence, candidate c) emerges as the optimal output in the computation. Table 64. Optimality t heory tableaux demonstrating tone assignment in Dimasa INPUT [baba ] [rao] F F SPECIFYT CRISP ALIGN R (PRWD, LT) MAX T *R,*F *M DEP T a. [miya] [rao] | | F F *! ** b. [miya] [rao] | F ** *! *! c. [miya] [rao] | | | M F F Optimality Theor etical Treatment of Rabha Tones Rabha nonderived words follow a tone assignment pattern similar to the Dimasa one. Hence, the proposed schema of constraints is also applicable to Rabha (Table 65) In Table 6 5,

PAGE 132

132 in the input form the R(ising) tone is not associated with any of the sylla bles of the word /rima/. In case of candidate a), the R tone is associated with the initial syllable of the word. Hence it violates the higher ranked constraint CRISP ALIGN R(PRWD,LT). Moreover, the second syllable of the input is not assigned any tone. He nce, it violates another high ranked constraint SPECIFY T. In case of candidate b) a rising tone is inserted and specified with one of Table 65. Optimality t heory tableaux of Rabha tone assignment INPUT [ r i ma ] R SPECIFYT CRISP ALIGN R (PRWD, LT) MAX T *R,*F *M DEP T a. [ri ma] | R *! *! b. [ r i ma ] | | R R *! ** c. [ r i ma ] R *! d. [ ri ma ] | | M R the syllables in the word. The insertion of the rising tone violates the higher ranked constraint *R. It also violates the CRISP ALIGN R(PRWD,LT) constraint. Candidate c) also violates CRISP ALIGN R(PRWD,LT) as the underlying R tone is spread to two syllables. However, in case of candidate d) the initial syllable is assigned a mid tone and the underlying tone is assigned to the second syllable. Even though this candidate violates the constraints *M and DEP T, the constraints lower rank does not prevent d) from being the winning candidate. However, in case of morphological derivations in Rabha, even if the stem of a derivation is underlyingly associ ated with a lexical tone, it loses its tonal specification fulfilling the requirement for tone assignment on the rightmost syllable, resulting in the assignment of a

PAGE 133

133 default mid tone on the stem. Tone assignment in Rabha derivations is demonstrated in Exam ple 68, Example 69 and Example 610. rungR + kaiF rungMkaiF (6 8) to drink nom. the act of drinking trungF + damR trungMdamR (6 9) to learn nom. learner pharR + brokR pharMbrokR (6 10) to sell nom seller In the examples from Rabha, it is seen that the suffixes are underlyingly specified with lexical tones. When attached to a toned stem, the suffixes retain their tonal specification but the stems lose their tonal specification to accommodate the strict alig n right constraint in Rabha. The stem is then assigned a default mid tone satisfying the constraint SPECIFYT The fundamental difference between derivations in Dimasa and Rabha is that in Dimasa even after derivation the morphological boundaries are prese rved resulting in two separate prosodic units. However, in Rabha the derived word is considered to be a single prosodic word. In other words, the derivation in Rabha can be demonstrated as in Example 6 11. [ ] + [ ] [ ] (6 11) PRWD PRWD PRWD Table 6 6. Optimality t heory tableaux for Rabha derivations INPUT [rung ] [ kai ] | | R F SPECIFYT CRISP ALIGN R (PRWD, LT) MAX T *R,*F *M DEP T a. [rung kai ] | | R F *! ** b. [rung kai ] | F *! c. [ rung kai ] | | M F *

PAGE 134

134 Hence, the derivations in Rabha can be explained with an example as in Table 6 6. In Table 6 6, candidate a) is not plausible as the initial syllable of the derived word still retains the lexical tone that was specified underlyingly violating the high ranked constraint CRISPALIGNR (PRWD, LT). Candidate b) is also ruled out as the init ial syllable is not specified with any tone after the lexical tone was deleted. This candidate violates the low ranked MAX T constraint but more importantly it violates the high ranked SPECIFY T that makes candidate b) implausible. In case of candidate c) the insertion of the mid tone on the initial syllable violates the low ranked constraints *M D EP T and MAX T but it satisfies the high ranked constraints. The initial syllable then is specified with a default mid level tone which satisfies the SPECIFY T constraint resulting in the emergence of candidate c) as the optimal output. Discussion The optimality t heor etical analyses of Dimasa and Rabha tones can be demonstrated with the same set of constraints. The individual morphophonotactics of the two languag es make it possible for the two languages to be analyzed with the same set and ranking of constraints. In case of tone assignment in underived disyllables both Dimasa and Rabha operate in exactly the same way. However, in case of derived disyllables the tw o languages operate differently. In case of Dimasa, the suffixes and stems form two separate prosodic units. This makes lexical tone assignment both on the stem and suffix poss ible. In case of Dimasa derived polysyllables the prosodic structure demonstrate d in Example 6 12 is followed. [stem] [suffix] (6 12) PRWD PRWD However, in case of Rabha, the whole morphological unit consisting of the stem and the suffix, functions as a single prosodic unit. Hence, for Rabha derived polysyllables, the prosodic structure demonstrated in Example 6 13 is followed.

PAGE 135

135 [stem suffix] (6 13) PRWD From the discussion above and from the facts mentioned earlier in the chapter from Sarmah (2 004), it can be concluded that among TibetoBurman languages the BodoGaro group of languages are considerably richer in derivational and inflectional morphology. Van Driem (2001) mentions that even though there was a complex morphology in the proto forms of the SinoTibetan languages, it was simplified in many Tibeto Burman languages leading to paucity of derivational morphology in them. Considering that it is interesting to note that the Bodo Garo group of languages still has a much richer morphology than many of the other Tibeto Burman languages. However, the morphotonological interactions in these languages are not uniform and rather conflicting as demonstrated in the case of Rabha and Dimasa. Hence, a further direction that this work could take is to investigate the cognates of the derivational and inflectional affixes in the sister languages of the Tibeto Burman language subfamily.

PAGE 136

136 CHAPTER 7 CONCLUSION This dissertation reports on a study conducted on the tonal phonology of Dimasa and Rabha languages. The primary aim of this study was to f igure out the tonal inventories of two Tibeto Burman languages namely Dimasa and Rabha using acoustic and statistical means. Apart from that, this work also attempted to determine the operation of tones in morphological changes in Dimasa and Rabha derivations. In the following sections the major findings of this study are summarized. Towards the end of this chapter suggestions for further study are discu ssed. Tone Inventories This study determ ined the number of tones in Dimasa and Rabha with the help of acoustic and statistical analysis. As far as the number of tones is concerned, this study concludes that in both Dimasa and Rabha, there are three phonolo gical tones or tonemes. It has been shown that in both languages the type of the three phonological tones is also very similar. Depending on the shape of the pitch contour, it is assessed that Dimasa and Rabha have a rising (R), falling (F) and a mid level (M) tone. T he three phonological tones of Dimasa are obtained by normalizing the pitch contours of the three Dimasa tones with the carrier phrases of the target toned word (Figure 7 1) It has also been observed that words with /th/ and / / as onsets aff ect the entire p itch contour of the rising tone. The inherent quality of these two phonemese render a high level pitch co ntour whenever a rising tone occues on the following tone bearing unit. However, this pitch contour is only a phonetic variation of the phonological rising tone and hence considered to be in the same category as of the rising tones. Hence, it is concluded that Dimasa has two allotones for the rising tone in the language.

PAGE 137

137 Figure 71. Three phonological t ones of Dimasa T he normalized pitch contours for the three phonological tones show certain differences. Unlike Dimasa, Rabha rising tones rise very sharply but the falling tones fall less sharply (Figure 72) Mean F0d or the difference between th e offset and the onset va lues vary largely between Dimasa and Rabha. The value of F0d in Rabha is observed to be much bigger in case of the contour tones, than in Dimasa (Figure 7 3) Tones in Monosyllables In both Dimasa and Rabha, any one of the three lexical tones can be assigned to any monosyllable In both languages, the speakers seem to depend more on the shape of the contour than the average pitch values. The evidence for this claim comes from the fact that in both languages there are two contrastive contour tones and only one register tone. Let this argument be illustrated with an example. I t is also noticed that the averaged normalized Rabha pitch contours overlap with each other to a large extent (Figure 7 2) In other words the onsets vary not only among tones but also within a single tone. However, that does not give rise to any functional difficulty in perceiving Rabha tones as Rabha speakers pay more attention to the 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 222% 24% 26% 28% 30% 32% 34% 36% 38% 40% 42% 44% 46% 48% 50% 52% 54% 56% 58% 60% 62% 64% 66% 68% 70% 72% 74% 76% 78% Falling Mid Rising Rising (sh, th)

PAGE 138

138 Figure 7 2. Three phonological t ones of Rabha Figure 73. Comparison between Dimasa and Rabha F0d 2 1.5 1 0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 Rising Mid Falling 16.79 1.37 20.64 22.90 0.83 12.20 25 20 15 10 5 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 Dimasa Rabha Rising Mid Falling

PAGE 139

139 overall change of pitch values than the average values of pitch across a pitch continuum. The case of Dimasa ( Figure 71), it shows a significant effect of the onset consonants, resulting in an allotone of the rising tone in Dimasa. The rising to ne in Dimasa, when following a /th/ or a / / in the onset position, changes its rising contour into a high level contour. In both Dimasa and Rabha, some speakers showed extremely small difference in terms of F0d of the contour tones. For instance, speaker CH of Dimasa has an average F0d of only 4.14 in the production of rising tones and 8.99 in the production of falling tones (Appendix C, Table C 1). Similarly, Rabha speaker KC has an average F0d of only 10.68 in the production of falling tones of Rabha. Even though the F0d values are very small, it is not uncommon to have such small differences of fundamental frequency in the production of cont rastive tones in tone languages as seen in Chapter 3. Considering the minimum F0d noticed in the contour tones of ot her languages, the small F0d of some speakers of Rabha and Dimasa in producing the rising and the falling tones of the two languages may be well within the distinguishable range of the native speakers. Tones in Disyllables Sarmah (2004), Joseph and Burling (2001, 2007) note that in Bodo and Tiwa disyllables only one syllable is specified with a lexical tone. The remaining syllable is usually toneless according to Joseph and Burling (2001, 2007) and assigned with a default mid tone according to Sarmah (2004) In this study, it has been demonstrated that in Dimasa and Rabha only one lexical tone is underlyingly specified, and that it emerges as right aligned in the output. In other words Dimasa and Rabha lexical tones are assigned only on the rightmost syllable in a disyllabic word. The initial or the leftmost syllable is assigned a mid level tone. Hence, it can be claimed that the mid -

PAGE 140

140 level tone is the most unmarked tone in the grammar of Dimasa and Rabha and it can be assigned to any syllable that has not be en underlyingly specified for a lexical tone. General Tone Assignment Pattern Owing to the facts reported in the previous sections it can be concluded that in both Dimasa and Rabha underived words, only one lexical tone is underlyingly specified and that lexical tone is associated with the rightmost syllable of word. Any syllable that is devoid of an underlying lexical tone is assigned an unmarked mid level tone that is a part of the tonal inventory of both the languages. Tones in Derived Polysyllables Un like tone assignment patterns in monosyllables and disyllables, tone assignment patterns in derived polysyllables are distinct in Dimasa and Rabha. In Dimasa derivations, both the suffixes and stems retain their underlying tonal specifications. In other words in Dimasa both the suffixes and stems are phonologically considered as two separate lexical items, even after they have been added together However, in case of reduplications in Dimasa, the reduplicated form is considered a single prosodic word where only one lexical tone is attached. However, in the case of Rabha, only the underlying tonal representation of the suffix is retained and the tonal specification of the stem is lost. In other words, the derived words in Rabha are considered one lexical i tem and fulfilling the criterion of only one lexical tone for each lexical item, only the tone on the rightmost syllable is retained. However, the left edge or the stem subsequently receives a mid level tone satisfying the phonetic requirements of the deri ved word. Implications from the Current Study This study is an attempt to understand the tones of TibetoBurman languages, specifically, of languages of the Bodo Garo subfamily. The findings of this study are expected to enrich the

PAGE 141

141 knowledge about the tona l typology of the Tibeto Burman languages. This study provides the first acoustic analyses of t ones of Dimasa and Rabha tones. The methodology adopted for acoustic analyses provided crucial information about the nature of tones in Dimasa and Rabha. Apart f rom that it also confirmed the maximum extent of consonantal interference in Rabha and Dimasa. This study found that the initial 20% and the final 20% of a pitch track are most likely to be affected by the consonant quality in the onset or coda. Hence, thi s study proposed that to obtain a genuine and reliable pitch track of a tone, unaffected by coda or onset consonants, the initial 20% and the final 20% of the pitch track should not to be taken into account. The methodology of this study also took care of speaker variability by normalizing the pitch contour of the target word with the average pitch of the carrier phrase. This method not only took care of speaker variability but also of listing artifacts. Future Directions The results of this study support the idea that the BodoGaro gro up of languages is two or at most a three tone language system. It also indicates that all Bodo Garo languages may have only one lexical tone assigned in each poly syllabic entry. Along these lines, it is imperative that other languages of the BodoGaro family be subjected to acoustical analyses. This kind of investigation is also very important as far as linguistic typology is concerned as not much is known about the tonal characteristics of the languages of the BodoGaro subf amily. Findings of any production experiment can be further strengthened if they are supported by perception experiments. Hence, it is probative that a more complete perception study on Dima sa and Rabha tones be conducted to validate the findings of this a coustic study.

PAGE 142

142 APPENDIX A DIMASA WORD LIST Table A 1. Dimasa words with English meanings Dimasa English Dimasa English bai to spin bai ri to cause to dance bajang where bai ri to cause to filter bajang younger brother bai ri to cause to order balai nearly, almost bai to cause to ship odei bani because bai to cause to spin bani made by hand balai ri to cause to accomplish bao to arrange balai buthu leaves bao to think bao ri to cause to spread dao bird bao ri to cause to think dao to make dao buthu birds dao to make/weave dao ri to cause to make du to make eat dao ri to cause to weave du to make soil ready du ri to cause to feed gisi call of rooster du ri to make soil ready gisi depend gishi ri cause to depend gisi wet gishi ri cause to wet goron company goron ri to cause to meet goron confuse goron ri to cause to confuse hadi field hadi buthu fields hadi rain hathai buthu markets hathai hillock, white ant hathai buthu teeth hathai market hathai buthu bullets hathai teeth hoba ri to cause to scream hathai bullet hoba ri to cause to knit hoba scream kha buthu livers, hearts hoba to weave kha ri to cause to tie kha liver, heart khai ri to cause to rub kha to tie khai ri to cause to run khai to rub khao ri to cause to pluck khai to run khao ri to cause to steal khaoba to pluck khu buthu mouths khao pluck khu ri to cause to dig khaoba to steal khu ri to cause to serve khao steal miya buthu bamboo shoots khu face miya raw male persons khu to dig sa raw sons khu to serve sa buthu teas miya bamboo shoot sao ri to cause to rot miya male person sao buthu bodies miya yesterday shain buthu suns

PAGE 143

143 Table A 1. Continued Dimasa English Dimasa English basa son shain ri to cause to ask, beg sa tea shu ri to cause to beat sao to rot shu ri to cause to measure sao body shu ri to cause to stitch shain sun shu ri to cause to wash shain to ask, beg sing ri to cause to bark shu to beat sing ri to cause to ask shu to measure sing ri to cause to cut, shave shu to stitch thao ri to cause to sow shu to wash thu ri to cause to sleep sing bark thu ri to cause to spit sing to ask wai ri to cause to chew sing to cut, shave zao ri to cause to puncture thao tasty, oil zao ri to cause to row thao to sow zao ri to winnow thu deep zik ri to cause to kick thu sleep thi ri to cause to speak thu spit thi ri to cause to die wai eat/to chew kse 'small' wai fire kse kse 'small small' zao to puncture ged 'big' zao to row ged ged 'big big' zao to winnow noli 'village' zik female noli noli 'villages' zik to kick lma 'road' (n) thi speak lma lma 'roads' thi to die riza 'thousand' thi blood rizin rizin 'thousands' maithai year nobro 'ward' maithai source nobro nobro 'wards' lai page lail 'easily' lai easy lail lail 'very easily' lai wish hasr 'smiling' tang go hasr hasr 'very smiling' tang survive kre 'slow' ri give kre kre 'slowly' ri cloth prik 'silent' asari buthu rainy seasons prik prik 'silently' baba raw fathers gibin 'different' ba ri Make shallow gibin gibin 'differently' ba ri carry a child gibi 'true' badai buthu grandmothers gibi gibi 'truely' bagarang buthu feathers rab 'slight'

PAGE 144

144 Table A 1. Continued Dimasa English Dimasa English bai ri to break rab rab 'slightly' bai ri to cross rez 'light' lug lug 'friendly' rez rez 'lightly' miti 'year' lug 'friend'

PAGE 145

145 APPENDIX B RABHA WORD LIST Table B 1. Rabha words with English meanings Rabha English Rabha English rima to cook dhawa war rai banana leaf dhawadam warfare rai judgement besor mustard seed rai go to bring smt besordam mustard field ro length may paddy ro endless maygrim paddy field sa e at pan tree ram a proper name pangrim forest bakok bamboo tube sam grass aphe star samgrim field of grass dokhom low stool kay human being rampar wind kaygiri master masi deer chay song maru wild cat chaygiri song writer khusung tortoise krourang literature rethe banana krouranggiri litterateur nakor ear chayphang singer nukhang face bay deity si die bayphang assistant of a priest si blood nuken eye kha tie chika water kha bitter nukenchi tears so rot zi stool so burn nukzi eye excreta na hear khusem mouth na fish men hair su peck khusemmen moustache su pierce, pound masu cow kho weave a basket masubizan cows kho draw water bak pig song village bakbizan pigs song to set on the stove na fish nang need, useful nabizan fishes nang you minku cat graw abundant minkubizan cats graw intensely nen cloth sakay act of eating nenbizan clothes mini to laugh the fruit minikay act of laughing thebizan fruits reng to go pan tree

PAGE 146

146 Table B 1. Continued Rabha English Rabha English rengkai act of going panbizan trees si to die sandri sieve sikai death sandribizan sieves tan to cut nok house tankay act of cutting nokbizan houses tong to stay dada elder brother tongkai act of staying dadatang elder brother and others rung to drink bibi elder sister rungkai act of drinking bibitang elder sister and others natham to listener zuzu grandmother nathamgir listener zuzutang grandmother and others tring to learn aya mother tringgir learner ayatang mother and others kitring to teach gabur youth kitringgir teacher gaburtang youths pri to buy mecha woman pribrok buyer mechatan women phar to sell baba father pharbrok seller babarong father and others chi to see, look buzi sister in law chibrok seer, onlooker buzi sister in law and others sa to eat nang you sabrok eater nangrong you (pl) ron to distribute o he ronbra distributor orong they poray to read noknok from house to house poraybra reader song song from village to village tringdam school changchang who khar to work ata what khardam workplace ataata what phardam shop bhairas virus tunuk to show sam uraal tunukdam auditorium sam wait! bar fire sam grass bardam fireplace tatheng foot par flower tatheng dont go pardam garden ram road

PAGE 147

147 APPENDIX C STATISTICS CONDUCTED ON INDIVIU AL SPEAKERS

PAGE 148

Table C 1. Comparison of F0d values for each speaker in Dimasa Table C 2. Comparison of F0d values for each speaker in Rabha Speaker Gender N ANOVA (p value) Mean F0d for each tone Bonferroni Post hoc test (differences in means) R M F R x M M x F F x R BB F 213 0.00 18.45 0.97 25.74 0.000 0.000 0.000 BT F 241 0.00 25.43 0.21 23.28 0.000 0.000 0.000 ST F 162 0.00 15.72 0.11 15.83 0.000 0.000 0.000 SD F 134 0.00 21.72 1.12 16.11 0.000 0.000 0.000 MT F 245 0.00 31.00 1.55 31.18 0.000 0.000 0.000 JH M 108 0.00 19.69 0.96 14.24 0.000 0.000 0.000 CH M 108 0.00 4.14 0.74 8.99 0.000 0.000 0.000 PJ M 162 0.00 13.44 1.90 12.60 0.000 0.000 0.000 148 Speaker Gender N ANOVA (p value) Mean F0d for each tone Bonferroni Post hoc test (differences in means) R M F R x M M x F F x R AN F 136 0.00 27.59 1.42 31.73 0.000 0.000 0.000 LK F 156 0.00 24.60 0.50 12.15 0.000 0.000 0.000 AR F 134 0.00 23.22 1.67 15.27 0.000 0.00 1 0.00 0 SB F 125 0.00 25.12 1.59 20.06 0.000 0.000 0.000 OK M 113 0.00 22.01 2.19 12.58 0.000 0.000 0.000 KC M 128 0.00 28.05 1.15 10.68 0.000 0.000 0.000 KO M 130 0.00 26.15 1.00 32.99 0.000 0.000 0.001 TR M 118 0.00 31.04 2.28 15.22 0.000 0.000 0.000

PAGE 149

149 APPENDIX D ADDITIONAL FIGURES AND TABLES Table D 1. Bonferroni tests for average normalized tone s with Dimasa tone types as factors Groups Difference Statistic p v alue Rising m id 0.025 1.721 0. 858 Rising f alling 0.148 9.431 0. 746 Mid f alling 0.123 8.806 0. 746 Table D 2. Bonferroni tests for average normalized tone s with Rabha tone types as factors Groups Difference Statistic p value Rising m id 0. 000 0.000 1 000 Rising f alling 0. 070 1.128 0. 268 Mid f alling 0 070 0 892 0. 383 Table D 3. Results of an ANOVA test conducted on different groups of the F0 contour S ource D.F. SS MS F P rob >F OMEGA SQR. B etween 4 18204.96 4551.24 4.16 0.00 0.01 W ithin 2200 2405768.07 1093.53 T otal 2204 2423973.03 Table D 4. Results of a Bonferroni test comparing different groups on the F0 contour of Dimasa Groups Difference Statistic Prob > Value Significant? 0 20% vs. 22 40% 6.060 2.949 0.003 YES 22 40% vs. 42 60% 0.215 0.095 0.925 NO 42 60% vs. 62 80% 0.330 0.144 0.886 NO 62 80% vs. 82 100% 2.489 1.045 0.296 NO Table D 5. Results of one way ANOVA test on Dimasa tone types Source D.F. SS MS F (2, 1070) p value Between 2 271953.86 135976.93 701.98 0.00 Within 10 70 207264.02 193.70 Total 10 72 479217.88 Table D 6. Results of Bonferroni post hoc test on Dimasa tone types Groups Difference p value Rising m id 18.071 0.000 Rising f alling 37.440 0.000 Mid f alling 19.369 0.000

PAGE 150

150 Table D 7. ANOVA test conducted on Dimasa normalized data S ource D.F. SS MS F (2, 10 70 ) p value B etween 2 1139.11 569.55 328.74 0.00 W ithin 10 70 1853.81 1.73 T otal 10 72 2992.91 Table D 8. Bonferroni test conducted on Dimasa normalized data Groups Difference Statistic p value R ising f alling 2.730 31.006 0.000 R ising m id 1 4 11 12 723 0.000 M id f alling 1 319 13.757 0.000 Table D 9. One way A NOVA r esults for Rabha t ones S ource D.F. SS MS F (2, 771 ) p value B etween 2 138454.42 69227.21 235.95 0.00 W ithin 771 226206.72 293.39 T otal 773 364661.14 Table D 10. Bonferroni test for three tone t ypes in Rabha Groups Difference Statistic p value Rising m id 2 3 695 15.431 0.000 Rising f alling 35.060 18.923 0.000 Mid f alling 11.366 8.902 0.000 Table D 11. Bonferroni test on F0d of each syllable of /goron/ Groups Difference Statistic Prob>Value Initial s yllables 0.388 0. 758 0. 458 Final s yllables 3.238 7 007 0.000 Table D 12. Bonferroni test on mean F0d of each syllable of /hathai/ Initial s yllable Groups Difference Statistic p value bullet hillock 0.323 0.985 0. 343 bullet market 0.352 1.403 0.180 bullet teeth 0.027 0.069 0.946 hillock market 0.029 0.246 0.809 hillock teeth 0.350 0.895 0.387 market teeth 0.894 2 098 0.049 Final s yllable Groups Difference Statistic p value bullet hillock 0.417 0. 448 0. 662 bullet market 1.808 2.902 0.00 0 bullet teeth 0.31 8 0.328 0.000 hillock market 2.225 4.156 0.000 hillock teeth 2.539 3.627 0.000 market teeth 0.712 4.475 0.002

PAGE 151

151 Figure D 1. Results of the Dimasa perception test categorized by correctness 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 deep sleep spit blood die speak thu thi INCORRECT CORRECT stimulus Correctness

PAGE 152

152 L IST OF REFERENCES Abramson, A. ( 1962) The vowels and tones of Standard Thai: Acoustical measurements and experiments. International Journal of American Linguistics 28; 2, part II Barry, J. G., & Blamey, P. J. (2004). The acoustic analysis of tone differentiation as a means for assessing tone production in speakers of Cantonese. Journal of the Acoustical Soc iety of America, 116(3), 1739 1748. Basumatary, P hukan Chandra ( 2004) A Study in Cultural and Linguistic Affinities of the Boros and Rabhas of Assam Ph.D. Dissertation. University of Gauhati, Guwahati, Assam. Basumatary, P hukan Chandra ( 2005) An Intr oduction to the Boro Language New Delhi: Mittal Publications. Benedict, P. K. ( 1972) SinoTibetan: A Conspectus Cambridge: Cambridge University Press Bhattacharya, P ramod C handra ( 1977 ) A Descriptive Analysis of the Boro Language Department of Publi cation: Guwahati University. Boersma, Paul & Weenink, David (2008). Praat: doing phonetics by computer (Version 5.0.30) [Computer program]. Retrieved July 22, 2008, from http://www.praat.org/Bradley 1982, Bradley, David. ( 1982 ) Register in Burmese. In Pa pers in SouthEast As ian Linguistics, No. 8. Tonation,117132. Canberra: Research School of Pacific Studies, the Australian National University. Burling, R obbins ( 1959) ProtoBodo. Language 35, 433453. Chelliah, Shobhana L. (1997) A Grammar of Meithei Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. Chhangte, Lalnunthangi. ( 1986) A Preliminary Grammar of the Mizo Language Masters thesis, University of Texas, Arlington. Chhangte, Lalnunthangi ( 1993) A Grammar of Mizo PhD Dissertation. University of Oregon. Chuang, C.K., Hiki, S., Sone, T. and Nimura, T. (1972). The acoustic features and perceptual cues of the four tones of standard colloquial Chinese Proceedings of the 7 th International Congress of Acoustics (Vol. 3): 297300. Budapest: Akademial Kiado. Coupe, A.R. (2003). A phonetic and phonological description of Ao: a TibetoBurman language of Nagaland. Canberra: Pacific Linguistics. Disner, S. (1980). Evaluation of vowel normalisation procedures. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 67 253261. Dundas, W. C. M. ( 1908) An outline grammar and dictionary of the Kachari (Dimasa) language Shillong: Eastern Bengal and Assam Secretariat Press.

PAGE 153

153 Fok, C.Y.Y. (1974) A perceptual study of tones in Cantonese. Hong Kong: University of Hong Kong Press Goldsmith, John. (1976). An overview of autosegmental phonology. Linguistic Analysis 2(1): 2368. Goldsmith John. ( 1976) Autosegmental Phonology Doctoral Dissertation, MIT Gowda, K.S. G. ( 1975) Ao Naga Phonetic Reader CIIL : Mysore Khouw, Edward and Ciocca, Valter. (2007). Green, A.D. (1 994) Syllable Structure in Burmese: a constraint based approach. MS. Cornell University. Grierson George. A. (1 903) The Linguistic Survey of India. Vol. V. IndoAryan Family. Eastern Group. Part I. Specimens of the Bengali and Assamese languages. Calcutta: Office of the Superintendent of Government Printing, India. Gruber, Jeffrey. (1 964) The distinctive features of tone MS. Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Halvorsrud, H. (1959). Boro Grammar Rev. H.Halvorsrud for The Boro Literature Board. H a udricourt A ndr G eorges. ( 1954) D e l origine des tons en Vitnamien. J A 242:6982. Henderson, E.J.A. (1979). B we K aren as a two tone language? P acific Linguistics: A ustralian N ational U niversity Hombert, J.M., J. J. Ohala, et al. (1 979) Phonetic Expl anations for the Development of Tones. Language 55 ( 1), 3758. Hyman, Larry M. ( 2001) Tone systems. In Martin Haspelmath, Ekkehard Knig, Wulf Oesterreicher, & Wolfgang Raible (eds), Language typology and language universals: An international Handbook 2, 13671380. Berlin & New York: Walter de Gruyter. Ishihara, Shunichi. (1999). An a coustic phonetic d escriptive a nalysis of pitch r ealisations in Kagoshima Japanese. Proceedings of the 1999 Conference of the Australian Linguistic Society. Joseph, U. V. and R obbins Burling. ( 2001) Tone Correspondences among the Bodo Languages. Linguistics of the Tibeto Burman Area. 24(2), 41 55. Jos eph, U. V. and Robbins Burling. ( 2007) The Comparative Phonology of the BoroGaro Languages Mysore: Central Institute of Indian Languages. Perceptual correlates of Cantonese tones Journal of Phonetics Volume 35, Issue 1, January 2007, Pages 104117.

PAGE 154

154 Klatt, Dennis H. ( 1973) Discrimination of Fundamental Frequency Contours in Synthetic Speech: Implicatio ns for Models of Pitch Perception. Journal Acoustic Society of America 53.1:816. Lalrindikii. ( 1989) Some Aspects of Autosegmental Phonology of English and Mizo. M Litt dissertation. Hyderabad: Central Institute of English and Foreign Languages. Leben W illiam. ( 1973). Suprasegmental P honology Ph.D. dissertation, MIT. Leben, William. (1978). The representation of tone. Tone: A linguistic survey edited by Victoria Fromkin, 177219. New York: Academic Press. Matisoff, J.A. ( 1991) SinoTibetan linguistics : present state and future prospects. Annual Review of Anthropology. 20, 469504. Matisoff, J.A. ( 2000) On 'SinoBodic' and other symptoms of neosubgroupitis. Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies (London) 63.3, 35669. Matisoff, J.A. ( 1999) In defense of Kamarupan. Linguistics of the Tibeto Burman Area. 22.2, 17382. Mazaudon, Mertin. ( 1985) ProtoTibeto Burman as a two tone lanaguge? Some evidence from Proto Tamang and Proto Karen. J. A. M. G. Thurgood, D. Bradley (eds.), Linguistics of the SinoTibetan Area: The State of the Art. Canberra: Australian National University. McCarthy, John and Alan Prince. ( 1993 a ) Prosodic Morphology I: constraint interaction and satisfaction. MS., University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and Rutgers University, New Brunswick, N.J. McCarthy, John and Alan Prince. ( 1993 b) Generalized alignment. Yearbook of Morphology 1993, 79154. McCarthy, John and Alan Prince. (1994).Prosodic Morphology, in John Goldsmith, ed., A Peng, S H. (1997) Production and perception of Taiwanese tones in different tonal and prosodic contexts Handbook of Phonological Theory Basil Blackwell, Oxford. Pp. 318366. Moor e, C.B., and Jongman, A. (1997). Speaker normalization in the perception of Mandarin Chinese to nes. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 102, 18641877. Morn, B. & E. Zsiga. ( 2006) The lexical and post lexical phonology of Thai tones. NLLT 24: 113178. Journal of Phonetics ,25: 3, 371400. Pep erkamp, Sharon. ( 1999) Prosodic words. Glot International 4, 1516. Pike, K. L. ( 1948 ) Tone Languages Ann Arbor, Michigan: University of Michigan Press.

PAGE 155

155 Prince, Alan and Paul Smolensky. ( 1993 ) Optimality Theory: constraint interaction in generative grammar MS., Rutgers University, New Brunswick, N.J., and University of Colorado, Boulder. Ravindran, N. ( 1974) Angami Phonetic Reader Central Institute of Indian Languages, Mysore Rose, P. J. (1987). Considerations on the normalisation of the fundame ntal frequency of linguistic tone. Speech Communication 6. 343351. Rose, P. J. (1991). How effective are long term mean and standard deviation as normalisation parameters for tonal fundamental frequency? Speech Communicati on 10. 229247. Sapir, Edward. (1925). Sound patterns in language Language (1): 37 51. Sarmah, Priyankoo and Caroline Wiltshire. (in press). An Acoustic Study of Dimasa Tones Selected papers fro m NEILS 2 .RCLT La Trobe University, Australia. Sarmah, Priyankoo and Caroline Wiltshire. ( 2006) An Acoustic Study of Mizo tones and Morphotonology. Paper presented at ICSTLL 39, University of Washington (Seattle), September.1417, 2006. Sarmah, Priyankoo. ( 2004) Some Aspects of the Tonal Phonology of Bodo. M Phil dissertation, Hyderabad: Central Institute of English and Foreign Languages. Schacter, P & Victoria Fromkin.(1968). A phonology of Akan: Akuapem, Asante & Fante. Working papers in phonetics 9, University of California, Los Angeles. Selkirk, E. (1980). Prosodic domains in phonology: Sanskrit revisited. Aronoff, M. & Kean, M L. (eds). Juncture, Saratoga, Ca.: Anma Libri, 10729. Singha, Kh. Dhiren. ( 200 1) The Phonology & Morphology of Dimasa. M.Phil. Dissertatio n. Silchar: Assam University. Sreedhar, M. V. (1976). Sema Phonetic Reader CIIL, Mysore. Thirumalai, M .S (1972). Thaadou Phonetic Reader. CIIL, Mysore. T emsunungsang, T. and P aroma Sanyal. ( 2005) Truncation in Ao Verbal Morphology. P aper presented at ICOSAL 6, Hyderabad, India. Trubetzkoy, N. (1939). Grundzge der Phonologie. Travaux du cercle linguistique de Prague 7. van Driem, George. ( 2001) .Languages of the Himalayas: An Ethnolinguistic Handbook of the Greater Himalayan Region. BR ILL. Wang William S Y. ( 1967) Phonological Features of Tone International Journal of American Linguistics 33.2, 93105.

PAGE 156

156 Watkins J. ( 2000) Phonation type phenomena in Burmese Tone Tone Symposium. Troms, Norway. Weidert, A. ( 1987) Tibeto Burman Tonology John Benjamins. Welmers, W. (1959). Tonemics, morphotonemics and tonal morphemes. General Linguistics 4, 19. Woo, Nancy H. ( 1969) Prosody and Phonology Doctoral dissertation. MIT. Xu, C. X. and Xu, Y. ( 2003) Effects of Consonant Aspiration on Mandarin Tones. Journal of the International Phonetic Association. 33, 165181. Xu, Y. ( 2001) Sources of tonal variations in connected speech. Journal of Chinese Linguistics 17, 131. Xu, Y. and X. Sun. ( 2002) Maximu m speed of pitch change and how it may relate to speech. Journal of Acoustical Society of America. 111(3), Xu, Yi. ( 2004) Understanding from the Perspective of Production and Perception. Language and Linguistics 5, 757797. Yip, M. ( 1991) The Tonal Phonology of Chinese New York: Garland Publishing. Yip, M. ( 2002) Tone Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

PAGE 157

157 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Priyankoo Sarmah was born in Tinsukia, Assam (India ). He received his B.A. in English from Gauhati University in 2000. He earned his M.A. in English (l inguistics) and M.Phil. in linguistics from the Central Institute of English and Foreign Languages (now the English and Foreign Languages University) in 2002 and 2004 respectively He joined the University of Florida as a Ph.D. student in fall 2004.