The Laboratory Phonology group (research area FB I) investigates the physiological, phonological and psychological aspects of speech production and perception. This includes, for instance, breathing patterns in dialogues, co-speech gestures and body movements during speaking. Our work is theoretically motivated and often practically oriented (or ecologically valid) as we are working on language phenomena observed in natural conversation and monologues. The Laboratory Phonology group at ZAS has two laboratories: the sound-proofed lab serves to record acoustic, perceptual, aerodynamic, 3D-articulatory and breathing data (e.g. to investigate language planning or anticipatory articulatory patterns). In our new motion capture laboratory with 12 cameras, we are able to record the coordination between language and body movements (e.g. language accompanying gestures; turn-taking in dialogues; language convergence etc.).
Moreover, we are investigating the relationship between language use (as a result of multilingual and multiethnic communities) and the expression of identity (as an index of the speakers’ national, local and social belonging) in the speech of adolescents with diverse linguistic and social backgrounds. Further, we are exploring listeners’ attitudes to languages, dialects, and sociolects where fine phonetic detail is socially evaluated and where the attention paid to speech provides insights to the cognitive processing of language.