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20 Januari 2012

English Phonology


Makalah ini disusun untuk memenuhi
salah satu tugas mata kuliah English Phonology semester VA

Drs. Agung Dwi H.

Disusun Oleh :
1)   Adam Abaabiil Tribuana                       (09423827)
2)   Tegar Pradhitya Nugraha                     (09423839)
3)   Andriyas Gautama Putra                       (09423831)

Jalan Raya Klitik Km 05 Ngawi 0351 749295


This paper is arranged to introductory on English phonology of the sort taught in the first year of The English Language. The students on such courses can struggle with phonetics and phonology ; it is sometimes difficult to see past the new symbols and terminology, and the apparent assumption that we can immediately become consciously aware of movements of the vocal organs which we have been making almost automatically for the last eighteen or more years. This paper attempts to show us why we need to know about phonetics and phonology, if we are interested in language and our knowledge of it, as well as introducing the main units and concepts we require to describe speech sounds accurately.
When it’s arranged to presenting the details of phonology, I have also chosen to use verbal descriptions rather than diagrams and pictures in most cases. The reason for this is we need to learn to use our own intuitions, and this is helped by encouraging us to introspect and think about our own vocal organs, rather than seeing disembodied pictures of structures which don’t seem to belong to them at all.
Our hope is that a through grounding in the basics will help us approach more abstract theoretical and met theoretical issues in more advanced courses with greater understanding of what the theories intend to do and to achieve, and with more chance of evaluating competing models realistically.


Phonology  is the study of sound patterns,  where sound refers to the auditory effect of
articulations made by the vocal apparatus during speech,  and patterns, to abstract
structures that correlate to mind —they “attract our notice, they grab our attention,
they seem in varying degrees to somehow fit human processes of cognition, to be sense
making, to bear intelligibility” . As a core discipline of generative linguistics,
phonology is driven by the following assumption:
The overt aspects of language—the articulatory actions and the acoustic
signal they produce—cannot be properly understood without reference
to the covert aspect of language, that is, to the implicit knowledge
that enables individuals to speak and understand a language.
The modern view of phonology —as the study of an aspect of human cognition
rather than the study of an external, physical or social reality— originated during the
late 1950’s and early 1960’s with Morris Halle and Noam Chomsky who were hired at
the Massachusetts Institute of Technology amid concerns that the Russian KGB were
close to being able to use telepathy.  While phonology has never been used for telepathy
(by definition, it can’t!),  to be sure it now has many other applications outside linguistics.
For instance, it is of great consequence to language instructors and has received attention among educators because of its importance to reading.


1. Phonetics is the study of the articulation and acoustic properties of the sounds of human language.
2. Phonetics is the study of the sounds of language.  These sounds are called phonemes.
Phonetic has three different aspect:
  • 1. Articulatory phonetics
The study of how speech sounds are produced by the human vocal apparatus.
  • 2. Acoustic phonetics
The study of the sound waves made by the human vocal organs for communication.
  • Auditory phonetics
The study of how speech sounds are perceived by the ear, auditory nerve, and brain.

       a)  The Vocal Tract
Vocal tract is the airway used in the production of speech, especially the passage above the larynx, including the pharynx, mouth, and nasal cavities.
Ø  Alveolar Ridge
A short distance behind the upper teeth is a change in the angle of the roof of the mouth. (In some people it's quite abrupt, in others very slight.) This is the alveolar ridge. Sounds which involve the area between the upper teeth and this ridge are called alveolars.
Ø  Hard Palate
The hard portion of the roof of the mouth. The term "palate" by itself usually refers to the hard palate.
Ø  Soft Palate / Velum
The soft portion of the roof of the mouth, lying behind the hard palate. The tongue hits the velum in the sounds [k], [g], and [ng]. The velum can also move: if it lowers, it creates an opening that allows air to flow out through the nose; if it stays raised, the opening is blocked, and no air can flow through the nose.
Ø  Uvula
The small, dangly thing at the back of the soft palate. The uvula vibrates during the [r] in many French dialects.
Ø  Pharynx
The cavity between the root of the tongue and the walls of the upper throat.
Ø  Tongue
The flat surface of the tongue just behind the tip.
Ø  Tongue Body / Dorsum
The main part of the tongue, lying below the hard and soft palate. The body, specifically the back part of the body (hence "dorsum", Latin for "back"), moves to make vowels and many consonants.
Ø  Tongue Root
The lowest part of the tongue in the throat.
Ø  Epiglottis
The fold of tissue below the root of the tongue. The epiglottis helps cover the larynx during swallowing, making sure (usually!) that food goes into the stomach and not the lungs. A few languages use the epiglottis in making sounds. English is fortunately not one of them.
Ø  Vocal Folds / Vocal Cords
Folds of tissue stretched across the airway to the lungs. They can vibrate against each other, providing much of the sound during speech.
Ø  Glottis
The opening between the vocal cords. During a glottal stop, the vocal cords are held together and there is no opening between them.
Ø  Larynx
The structure that holds and manipulates the vocal cords. The "Adam's apple" in males is the bump formed by the front part of the larynx.
     b)  Voice and Voiceless

            Voice :  A simple explanation of voiced consonants is that they use the voice. This is easy
to test by putting your finger on your throat. If you feel a vibration the consonant is voiced. Here is a list of some voiced consonants. Pronounce each consonant sound (not the letter) and feel the vibration of your vocal chords.

th (as in then)
j (as in Jane)
Voiceless :  Voiceless consonants do not use the voice. They are percussive and use hard sounds. Once again, you can test if a consonant is voiceless by putting your finger on your throat. You will feel no vibration in your throat, just a short explosion of air as you pronounce. Pronounce each of these consonant sounds and feel NO vibration in your throat.
th (as in thing)

 CThe Place  of Articulation

These are the abbreviated names for the places of articulation used in English:
1)      Bilabial
The articulators are the two lips. English bilabial sounds include [p], [b], and [m].
2)      Labio – dental
These sound are formed with the upper teeth and the lower lip. English labio-dental sounds include [f] and [v].
3)      Dental
Dental sounds are formed with the tongue tip behind the upper front teeth.
4)      Alveolar
These sounds are formed with the front part of the tongue on the alveolar ridge, which is the rough, bony ridge immediately behind the upper teeth. English alveolar sounds include [t], [d], [n], [s], [z], [l].
5)      Alveo palatals
Formed by  hard part in the root of mouth called palate. Sound which is produced with the tongue at the in front of palate near alveolar ridge is called alveo palatal.
6)      Palatal
These sounds are formed with the tongue middle and the palate.
7)      Velars
The active articulator is the tongue body and the passive articulator is the soft palate or velum. Sounds produced with the back of tongue against the velum are called velars. English velars include [k], [g].
8)      Uvular
The sounds are produced from the tongue back and the uvula.
9)      Glottal
Glottal sounds are made in the larynx. There are two other sounds which are produce without the active use of the tongue and other parts of the mouth. English glottal include [ h]

b)      Manner of Articulation

      Consonants are sounds which involve full or partial blocking of airflow.  In English, the consonants are p, b, t, d, ch, j, k, g, f, v, th, dh, s, z, sh, zh, m, n, ng, l, r, w, and y.  They are classified in a number of different ways, depending on the vocal tract.
According the manner of articulation ( how breath is used) the consonants are:
1.         Stops, also known as plosives.  The air is blocked for a moment, then released. The word stop refers to stopping the air , the word plosives refers to the release the air.  In English, they are p, b, t, d, k, and g.
2.         Fricatives these are sounds produced by having the air rub against some surface in the mouth causing friction.  In English, these include f, v, th, dh, s, z, sh, zh, and h.
3.         Affricates are sounds that produced by made up of two parts a stop and fricative.  In English, we have ch (unvoiced) and j (voiced).  Many consider these as blends:  t-sh and d-zh.
4.         Nasals are sounds made with air passing through the nose.  In English, these are m, n, and ng.
5.         Laterals
These sounds are produced by having the air go out of the mouth from both besides of tongue. In English, these include [l].
6.         Vibrant
These are sounds produced by having the tongue vibrate in the mouth.
7.         Semivowels
      Semivowels are sounds that are, as half consonant and half vowel. In English, we    have w and y, which you can see are a lot like vowels such as oo and ee, but with the lips almost closed for w ( bilabial) and the tongue almost touching the palate for y (a palatal). 


Phoneme is the contrastive sound unit in a language, it is contrastive because it distinguishes meanings when exchanged for other phonemes in language. It is also called smallest unit of the sound.

Each one of these meaning-distinguishing sounds in a language is description as a phoneme. When we considered the basis of alphabetic writing, we were actually working with the concept of the phoneme as the single sound type which came to be represented by a single symbol. It is in this sense that the phoneme /t/ is described as a sound type of which all the different spoken versions of [t] are tokens. Note that slash marks are conventionally used to indicate a phoneme, /t/ , an abstract segment, as opposed to the square brackets, [t], used for each phonetic, or physically produced, segment.

An essential property of a phoneme is that it functions contrastively. We know that there are two phonemes /f/ and /v/ in English because they are the only basis contrast in meaning between the forms fat and vat, or fine and vine. This contrastive property is the basic operational test determining the phonemes which exist in a language. If we substitute one sound for another in a word and there is a change of meaning, then the two sounds represent different phonemes.

The Kinds of Phoneme

1.      Segmental
It is phonology that deals with the analysis of speech into phonemes which correspond fairly well to phonetic segments of the analyzed speech. Consist of consonant and vowel.

The Segmental Sounds of English consist of:
a)   The English Consonant
The English consonants are twenty-four in number. The word consonant is phonemic. Of courses the word consonant here does not refer to the consonant found in the English alphabet, but rather to the consonants as they sound orally. The example of consonants are:
/p/, /b/, /t/, /d/, /k/, /g/, /f/, /v/,/θ, /ð/, /s/, /z/, /∫/, /з/,/t∫/, /dз/, /h/, /m/, /n/, /η/,/l/, /r/, /w/, /j/.

b)   The English Consonant described
It is a list of the English consonant phonemes and their major allophones. The allophones are describes phonetically.

c)   Consonant Clusters
It is a combination of two or more consonant. Such clusters may occur in initial, medial, or final positions.

d)   The English Vowel
The English vowels are fourteen in number. In addition to these vowels, there are glides and diphthongs, which are really combinations vowels. The examples of vowels are: /i/, /i:/, /ei/, /æ/, /ə/, /۸/, /з/, /a/, /u:/, /u/, /əu/, /α/, /כ/.

e)   The English Vowel Described
It is a list of the English vowel phonemes. They are described phonetically, and their distribution is given with example: phoneme / e / , allophone [ e ] description mid open front unrounded. It occurs only initially and medially. / end / [end] ‘end’ ; / send / [send] ‘send’.

f)    Length in English Consonants and Vowels
Means the time it takes to produce a sound. This does not mean the speed at which a person speaks. It means, rather, the relative length of time in which each separate sound is produced, as compared with a longer or shorter time in which the same sound or other sounds may be produced in the stream of speech.

2.      Supra – Segmental
It is a vocal effect that extends over more than one sound segment in an utterance, such as pitch, stress, or juncture, pattern. In supra-segmental consist of:
a)   Stress
It is the force of breath with which sounds are produced. This force is relative; that is, the strength or weakness of the force is determined in relation to other forces of breath in the utterance or utterances of person. For example, in the word market, it is clear that the first syllable has stronger stress than second syllable. Four phonemic word stress levels :
·         Primary stress - symbol : /  /
·         Secondary stress – symbol : /  /
·         Tertiary stress – symbol : /  /
·         Weak stress – symbol : /  /

b)   Intonation
Means the changes in the pitch (or music) of the voice while producing speech. Every utterance is produced with some intonation and pitch. Pitch levels, like stress levels, are relative to each other.

c)   Pause
It is length of silence between parts of an utterance. In English, there are two pause phonemes. (Some linguistics believe that there are three pause phonemes). The two pause phonemes are a short one and a final one. bar The symbols used for these phonemes are a single bar for short pause and a double bar for the final pause.

d)   Juncture
It is really a very short pause; it is space in speech between sounds or word. In English, there is one juncture phoneme. The symbol for juncture phonemes is / + / ( a plus sign ).

e)   Rhythm
Means the beat of language. In English, rhythm is stress-timed. This means that the time between two primary stresses is the same. If there are many word or syllable between the two primary stresses, then these syllable will be pronounced fast; this is why native speakers of English jam their syllables. If, on the other hand, there is only a small number of syllables between the primary stresses, then these syllables will be pronounced slowly and more clearly.

A.    Minimal Pairs and Sets
        When two words are identical in form except for a contrast in one phoneme, occurring in the same position, the two words are described as a minimal pairs.
For examples: fanvan, betbat, sideside.
When a group of words are differentiated, each one from the others, by changing one phoneme (always in the same position) is a minimal sets. A minimal sets based on the vowels and consonants.
For examples based on vowel: featfit, fatfate, foughtfoot.
For examples based on consonant: bigpig, rigfig, digwig.

B.     Phones and Allophones

Phones is these phonetic units are technically that have difference in pronunciation.
For examples: seed and seen.
Allophones is these phonetic variants are technically, in English to realize single phoneme. For examples: [t], [th], and [d] are similar sound. They are similar because they are all alveolar stops. The only difference between them is that [t] is voiceless and unaspirated, [th] is voiceless and aspirated, and [d] is voiced.

C.     Relation to Phonology

In contrast to phonetics, phonology is the study of how sounds and gestures pattern in and across languages, relating such concern with other levels and aspects of language. Phonetics deals with the articulatory and acoustic properties of speech sounds, how they are produced, and how they are perceived.

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Kata Kunci : PHONOLOGY, PHONETIC, PHONEME, Phonology, Phonetic and Phoneme, Phonology, Phonetic, Phoneme, The Vocal Tract, Vocal Tract, Voice and Voiceless, The Place  of Articulation, Place Of Articulation,  Manner of Articulation, Manner Articulation, The Kinds of Phoneme, Segmental, Supra – Segmental, Minimal Pairs and Sets, Phones, Allophones, Relation to Phonology, Phonology, PhoNologY, Phonetic, Phones and Allophones, PHONES AND ALLOPHONES.

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