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Multimodal Perception of Prosodic Contrastive Focus in French: A Preliminary fMRI Study

Abstract : Contrastive focus is used to emphasize a word or group of words in an utterance as opposed to another. In French, it can be conveyed by prosody using a specific intonational contour on the constituent pointed at (XXXf a mangé la pomme. 'XXXf ate the apple.'). It remains unclear what neural processes underlie the perception of prosodic focus. Meanwhile studies have shown that prosodic processing in general cannot be restricted to the right hemisphere (see [1] for review). Moreover it appears ([2]) that even though the perception of prosodic focus was often considered as uniquely auditory, it is possible to perceive prosodic focus visually and the visual modality can enhance perception when prosodic auditory cues are degraded (whispered speech). This finding emphasizes the necessity to consider the perception of prosodic contrastive focus and speech prosody in general as multimodal. The aim of this study is to analyze the neural processing of prosodic focus from a multimodal point of view.
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Contributor : Hélène Lœvenbruck <>
Submitted on : Monday, March 30, 2009 - 10:15:01 PM
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  • HAL Id : hal-00371958, version 1


Marion Dohen, Hélène Loevenbruck, Akiko Callan, Daniel Callan, Monica Baciu, et al.. Multimodal Perception of Prosodic Contrastive Focus in French: A Preliminary fMRI Study. Summerschool: "Cognitive and physical models of speech production, perception and perception-production interaction. Part II* : Brain and Speech", Sep 2007, Autrans, France. ⟨hal-00371958⟩



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