Skip to content

Comparing the rhythm and melody of speech and music: The case of British English and French

by Aniruddh D Patel, John R Iversen, Jason C Rosenberg
Acoustical Society of America ()
Get full text at journal


For over half a century, musicologists and linguists have suggested that the prosody of a culture's native language is reflected in the rhythms and melodies of its instrumental music. Testing this idea requires quantitative methods for comparing musical and spoken rhythm and melody. This study applies such methods to the speech and music of England and France. The results reveal that music reflects patterns of durational contrast between successive vowels in spoken sentences, as well as patterns of pitch interval variability in speech. The methods presented here are suitable for studying speech-music relations in a broad range of cultures.

Cite this document (BETA)

Readership Statistics

156 Readers on Mendeley
by Discipline
33% Psychology
17% Linguistics
11% Arts and Humanities
by Academic Status
29% Student > Ph. D. Student
20% Researcher
14% Student > Master
by Country
4% United States
3% United Kingdom
1% Japan

Sign up today - FREE

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research. Learn more

  • All your research in one place
  • Add and import papers easily
  • Access it anywhere, anytime

Start using Mendeley in seconds!

Sign up & Download

Already have an account? Sign in