Perception and representation of Mandarin fricatives

Yu-an Lu


This study investigates the psychological reality of the complementary distributed palatal fricatives [?, ??, ?] and dental fricatives [ts, ts?, s] in Mandarin Chinese. An initial experiment following up on research showing a priming effect between allophonic variants but not between contrastive sounds, was conducted to see the extent to which the dental fricative [s] primes a palatal fricative [?], or vice versa. The results from semantic priming and lexical decision tasks suggest possible representations of the palatal fricative [?] and the dental fricative [s].

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