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Do Syllables Exist? Psycholinguistic Evidence For The Retrieval Of Syllabic Units In Speech Production

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Chapter Summary

Do syllables exist? Do syllables represent functionally relevant units in the course of speech production planning? Are syllables parts of the word forms that are stored in long term memory? Do syllables exist independently of the word forms, as separately stored units that are accessed during late stages in word form encoding? At what levels do syllables come into play, i.e. what is the psycholinguistic evidence for syllables as phonological and /or as phonetic units? Do syllables constitute applicable articulation units? How can one envision the interplay and coordination of syllabic units on different encoding levels? This chapter aims to find answers to these questions by a) reviewing theories of word production and their different assumptions regarding the involvement of syllables at different encoding levels during speech planning and b) by contrasting psycholinguistic evidence for and against these different assumptions.

Keywords: psycholinguistic evidence; speech production; syllables



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