A formant analysis of vowel disharmony in Ika-Igbo compound nouns

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Joy Oluchi Uguru


This paper reveals the assimilatory processes that take place in disharmonic and harmonic vowels of Ika Igbo compound nouns. These assimilatory processes explain why disharmonic vowels feature in Ika compounds. In carrying out the study, a data of 192 Ika Igbo compound nouns were produced by four (two males and two females) Ika Igbo speakers. Each speaker produced 48 utterances which were recorded and digitized at 44100 Hz using the praat speech analysing software. Twenty four compounds had disharmonic vowels while the other twenty four had harmonic ones. The F1 values, the primary acoustic correlate of ATR, were extracted using Praat, at midpoint of the coarticulated vowels. Student ‘t’ test analysis on the F1 values showed no significant difference between disharmonic and harmonic vowels (P > 0.5); an indication that assimilation harmonizes disharmonic vowels in Ika Igbo. Our findings also provide sufficient evidence that +ATR vowels do not always dominate –ATR ones as claimed by previous findings. 

Article Details

How to Cite
Oluchi Uguru, J. . (2019). A formant analysis of vowel disharmony in Ika-Igbo compound nouns. Journal of The Linguistic Association of Nigeria, 22(2), 113–126. Retrieved from https://jolan.com.ng/index.php/home/article/view/235
Author Biography

Joy Oluchi Uguru, Department of Linguistics, Igbo and other Nigerian Languages

University of Nigeria, Nsukka



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