Widely spoken languages are critical to the understanding of speech and language, due to their spatial and demographic variability. As the third European language in number of speakers, Portuguese has challenged phoneticians and phonologists with its wealth of varieties even before the advent of XXth century linguistics. In the past, topics such as nasalization, vowel reduction, stress, tone, rhythm, and vowel harmony were investigated in light of comparative grammar, neogrammarian theory, European and American structuralism, generative phonology and optimality theory – just to name a few. Yet, until recently, the questions of phonetic grounding raised by this literature lacked a firm basis for empirical treatment.

Laboratory phonology has recently changed this picture, providing new tools for the treatment of classical questions and leading to the discovery of new challenging phenomena made visible by instrumental methodology. Issues amenable to the new approach span phonological subsystems, variability, change, contact, L1 and L2 acquisition, etc.

Thus, given the growing visibility of Portuguese in meetings such as ICPhS, PAPE, and, more recently, LabPhon, this Special Collection was designed to provide a new forum for the small yet very active community of laboratory phonologists striving to understand the sound pattern of the language.

Guest editors:

Eleonora Albano, University of Campinas, Campinas, Brazil, albano@unicamp.br

Didier Demolin, Sorbonne Nouvelle, Paris, France, didier.demolin@sorbonne-nouvelle.fr


Research Paper

  • 1