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Vocal Fry 2022 : What Is The True Meaning of Modern Vocal Fry? A Challenge to Linguists and Voice Scientists

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When Jun 1, 2022 - Jun 5, 2022
Where Philadelphia
Submission Deadline Nov 5, 2021
Notification Due Jan 31, 2022
Categories    218
 

Call For Papers

Objective:
An extreme use of a voice feature with a lowered rough sound at the lowest range of a speaker's F0 (pitch) has become increasingly recognized in American, British, Australian and New Zealand young women, and now in men. It is not regarded as a voice disorder, but is the first voice feature to have come to the attention of the general public through traditional news media and now social media. Its true origins and meaning merit deeper scrutiny than have been given so far. Explanations in the scientific voice literature by linguists and voice scientists have been superficial, defensive, and even gender political. Reappraisal on a more scientific and far deeper level is required.

Methods:
A broad review of modern (intense, sustained and topic-related) vocal fry was made from the available published scientific literature, books and various online blogs and opinions to elucidate the main themes attempting to explain what appears to be a new and widely spreading voice phenomenon.

Results:
All professional vocal fry studies are conducted in voice laboratories and are therefore non-ecologic. However, they do provide valid conclusions about listener perceptions of gender voice attractiveness, dominance and authority in particular. Fudamental anatomical differences between the male and female larynx are casually dismissed, and a new term 'socially constrained voice' is invoked. That modern vocal fry is a form of vocal accommodation analagous to linguistic accommodation is a possibility.

Conclusions:
Digital voice recording and analysis have become possible only recently. Contemporary legal and ethical barriers to the use of non-consented ecologic voice recordings are now a major impediment to meaningful scientific voice research. The reasons for modern vocal fry cannot be explained by conventional linguistic principles. Vocal fry could be regarded as a separate voice behaviour. It could be considered that linguistic accommodation and modern vocal fry are both a form of behavioural mimicry. One is about inclusivity and politeness, and the other unconsciously, and even consciously, primal through enacting new social forces.

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