Difference Between Phonetics And Phonology

1199 Words 5 Pages
Language can be written or spoken. Still, speech is the main way people communicate and express themselves. Humans spoke before they started to write. Since both language and speech are related, we begin our study by the structure of the speech sound. This branch of linguistics is called phonetics. However we will focus on both phonetics and phonology, which study the sound system but in a different way.
What is phonetics?
Phonetics was first studied in the Indian subcontinent in the 4th century BCE, or even earlier than that the 6th century BCE, with Panini's explanation of the place (where are the sounds produced) and manner (how they are produced) of articulation of consonants. In the late 19th century, the phonogram was invented,
…show more content…
All vowels are voiced. They constitute the nucleus of a syllable. They are also classified into classes. They can be classified by the tongue height in the mouth; tongue position in the mouth; and lip position or shape. They are also classified into long, short and diphthongs. Diphthongs are combination of vowel sounds. We can learn more about description of sounds through the IPA Chart. IPA stands for the International Phonetic Association. (EL120 AOU text book, Introduction to the study of Language, pages 33-45)
Another study of sound system is phonology.
What is Phonology? Phonetics as stated above is the production of sounds. Phonology, on the other hand, studies the phonemes (sound segments of words or syllables). It is the study of the distribution of sounds in a language and the interactions between these different sounds. For instance the minimal pairs: bat - pat had - hat.
In the words "Bat" and "pat", the letter "B" is replaced by "p" which changes the entire meaning of the word. The same applies for the words "had" and
…show more content…
The words 'pin' and 'spin' has different [p] pronunciation. They are allophones of the phoneme /p/. Another example is: 'top'; 'stool' and 'eat'. They all have a common [t] sound. Notice that the [t] sounds are slightly different in the three words. When saying the [t] in the word 'top', there is a strong release or burst of air which is not available in the other words. This burst of air when pronouncing [t]/ [k]/ [p] is called aspiration. They must be aspired when they are the first sound in a syllable. Sounds also are influenced when are next to other sounds, which might cause sound changes. The changes caused are called assimilation. This could happen when we have a linking 'r' or and intrusive 'r'.
Linking 'r': A word that ends with a schwa linked with another word that begins with a vowel a linking 'r' is heard, such as, dear Allen /'dɪᵊr'a.ɪᵊn/.
Intrusive 'r': 'r' is sometimes added even if the word before it does not consist of 'r', such as, idea of /aɪ.'dɪᵊrᵊv/. (EL120 AOU text book, Introduction to the study of Language, pages 51-55)

Finally, there are a lot of languages around the world and each language has different speech sounds. Moreover phonetics is a complicated and interesting study of sound and has many branches. They are rules that simplify its study and they are not for granted. Any sound has different sound patterns in different languages.


Related Documents