Rhythmic segmentation in auditory illusions - Evidence from cross-linguistic mondegreens


When confronted with non-native songs, listeners occasionally experience auditory illusions and perceive words in their native language although they are fully aware of the song lyrics being sung in a different language. We compiled two corpora with the original language of the song lyrics being English and the percept being either German or French. Against these two corpora, we tested the rhythmic segmentation hypothesis, specifically examining the cases of juncture misperceptions. The findings suggest that both German and French speakers use prominent syllables as anchors for segmentation, but they do so in language specific ways. For German listeners, prominent syllables signal the onset of lexical words. For French listeners, prominent syllables indicate phrase-finality. This crosslinguistic difference in boundary cueing corresponds with the specific role of prominent syllables in these languages, and makes a strong case for the concept of native listening in the context of sung speech.

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@inproceedings{Kentner2015RhythmicSI, title={Rhythmic segmentation in auditory illusions - Evidence from cross-linguistic mondegreens}, author={Gerrit Kentner}, booktitle={ICPhS}, year={2015} }