Segmental And Suprasegmental Case Study

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Anthony Fox (2000) argued that “A simple dichotomy 'segmental' vs. 'suprasegmental' does not do justice to the richness of phonological structure 'above' the segment; . . . this structure is complex, involving a variety of different dimensions”. Word stress is often considered subsidiary by parents, compared to consonants and vowels. However, it is indicative of a progress in children’s learning capacities, as children acquire salient, acoustically perceptible, and communicatively more meaningful phonetic distinctions even prior to vowels and consonants. Fig 1 portrays the heavy use of stress by Dorra. This could be translating the difficulty of uttering a full word at that age (11 months). Stress, in this case, helps the child divide the word to a few syllables. This assumption suggests the use of the suprasegmental to utter the …show more content…
An instance of this is the use of the word حَمْلَا /ħamla:/ originally meaning red to signify mandarin. The signifier-signified relationship is not well-established although the child, Hajer, is capable of uttering that word. Obviously, none of the people surrounding her attempted at naming mandarin with reference to its color which happens to be wrong in this case; needless to mention that mandarin is orange rather than red. What could explain the ability to utter the word without axiomatically understanding its meaning is an innate skill enabling the child to do so, being “pre-wired”. Another example in favor of the concept of modularity is that of Mohamed pronouncing numbers without having a tight grip on the very notion of counting, saying سَبْعَة كْلاَفَا فْنِينْ /fni:n klefa: sabʕa:/ originally meaning Two, three, seven while intending to say One, two, three. Showing three fingers alongside the utterance is a justification that language lies in a module of the mind that is distinct from the module responsible for