The paper is focused on the hypothesis that the linguistic behaviour of a speaker would depend on how he/she perceives the linguistic status of a person he/she is speaking to. This hypothesis is particularly interesting to study as an index of the mental representation that a determined group has of another, that is to say, the way a speaker adjusts his or her linguistic behaviour to that of the person he or she is speaking to will reflect how the latter is perceived by the speaker being the subject of our study. This paper presents an exploratory study of the dynamics of the Spanish vocalic system under the effect of the linguistic status variations of the interlocutor. A single speaker, native speaker of Spanish, was recorded on 3 situations in which the differences in the status of the person spoken to are clearly marked: a conversation with a native speaker of Spanish, a conversation with a non-native speaker of Spanish, and a reading task of isolated words. The assessment of the system's degree of organization in each speaking style was studied using various indices: the ? index to assess the variation of the degree of centralization of the vowel system under the speaking style variations, the ? index, which allows better discrimination between the three speaking styles than the discriminant analysis, to quantify the ratio of the inter vocalic class variability compared to the intra vocalic class variability in each speaking style. The results show both that significant inter-style acoustical differences do exist, and that they can better be stressed by the use of the ? index.
Sistema vocálico; Conversación; Análisis acústico; Variación lingüística; Fonética; Lengua española
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