Interaction of stress and pitch accent Palestinian Arabic Study

Lema Majdalawieh, Faizeh Hamood, Jonathan Nissenbaum

Over the recent years, there has been an increased need for Modern Standard Arabic speakers all over, as well as the different dialects that exist in the language, mainly due to the increased need to connect with the Arab world. However, little work has been put into research on the basic understanding of speech patterns and pitch contour of different dialects. When learning a language, the main objective of the learner is to obtain the most and be able to emulate the speech, sound, and rhythm of a native speaker. Achieving the three mentioned above is made harder without the basic understanding of the aspects of the language, such as phonology. The Palestinian Arabic language presents several physical phonetic properties that create distinctions among the native speakers from Palestine. This study examined the phonology of stress and accent in the Palestinian Arabic language. In particular, the research focused on investigating how the fundamental frequency and duration interact when stress and pitch accent vary. For this reason, the study relied on a three-way distinction for any syllable; accented and stressed syllables, unaccented and stressed syllables, and unstressed syllables. The research was also based on a qualitative study that used an analytical study design to determine the fundamental frequency and duration interaction when stress and pitch accents are varied in Palestinian Arabic speech. This process included a sample of nine participants who were native Palestinian Arabic speakers. The individuals selected were adults with ages ranging between 21-53 years old.The data collection was done with the use of an iPhone to record participants through the voice memos app. The recordings were edited and they were processed through voice analysis software, Audacity in order to analyze our data. Therefore, the six dialogues were recorded and submitted for analysis based on the three variables examined in the study.