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Synopsis

Speech and Language: Volume 1, Advances in Basic Research and Practice is a compendium of papers that discusses the processes and pathologies of, as well as applies theories and clinical issues to, speech and language. Some papers discuss perception of speech in early infancy, the problems faced by speech clinicians, and the anatomy of the perioral motor system. Based on data compiled on the infant's perception of speech sounds, one paper notes that human infants discriminate depending on fine temporal and frequency changes in a complex auditory array. Infants also show perceptual constraints while listening to speech characterized as adult- like; they are also predisposed to perceive certain speech-sound categories such as vowel and fricative categories. One paper examines the suggestion of Kent (1976) that "acoustic characteristics of children's speech...hold the promise of sensitive methods for the study of speech maturation and developmental disorders." This investigation involves the following: the recent attempts at multidimensional analyses of speech and perception; a measure of perceptual contrast; and results of feature comparison efforts. The compendium is well suited for linguists, ethnologists, psychologists, and researchers whose works involve linguistics, language learning, communications, and syntax.

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