NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ877196
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 22
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 36
ISSN: ISSN-0163-853X
"New Balls, Please!"--The Prosody of Tennis Scores
Swerts, Marc; van Wijk, Carel
Discourse Processes: A Multidisciplinary Journal, v47 n1 p55-76 2010
Tennis scores represent a natural language domain that offers the unique opportunity to study the effects of discourse constraints on prosody with strict control over syntactic and lexical variation. This study analyzed a set of tennis scores, such as "30-15," from live recordings of several Wimbledon and Davis Cup matches. The objective was to uncover how the prosody of these scores depended on three factors: (a) the local discourse context, which varied because, after every point, either the first or the second number was different than it had been in the score reported just previously; (b) the global situation, which varied because either the serving player or the receiving player had the lead in the current game; and (c) the speaker role, which varied as the umpire or a radio reporter uttered the scores. This study excised 96 tennis scores (spoken in English) by 2 umpires and 2 live radio reporters. These scores were labelled and perceptually evaluated in terms of perceived prominence and acoustically analyzed in terms of three prosodic characteristics: loudness, speech rate, and pitch. The perceptual and acoustic analyses both showed that the prominence patterns were affected by the global situation and speaker role, but not by the local context. For both speaker roles, prosodic prominence patterns correlated with whether the game, so far, was proceeding favorably for the serving player. In the umpire data, a favorable situation correlated with extra emphasis on the first word in a score, whereas in the reporter data, an unfavorable situation correlated with more emphasis on the second word. (Contains 8 tables and 3 footnotes.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A