Coordination of tongue tip and body in place differences among English coronal obstruents
Using electromagnetometry tracking of the tongue, Best et al. (2010, 2014) have demonstrated that Wubuy, an Australian language with four coronal stop places, shows significant differences in tongue tip vs. tongue body motion range and motion coordination contrasting apicals and laminals. Here we continue this line of inquiry with three coronal obstruents in English, the apical alveolar stop /d/ and alveo-palatal affricate /d? ?/ vs. the laminal dental fricative /ð/. The results show support for tongue tip/body motion range differences between /d/ and /ð/ across vowel contexts. They also showed a tongue tip/body motion coordination distinction between the apical /d/ and laminal /ð/, which was significant for /i/ and /u/ but not /a/ contexts. Results are consistent with the Wubuy findings (Best et al, 2010, 2014) despite the differences in the coronal obstruent contrasts of the two languages, suggesting an apical/laminal distinction in tongue tip/body coordination.