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2018-07-12 Thu

#3363. International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) [ipa][phonetics][history_of_linguistics][diacritical_mark][elt]

 昨日の記事「#3362. International Phonetic Association (IPA)」 ([2018-07-11-1]) に引き続き,この協会が作成した学術遺産たる International Phonetic Alphabet (国際音標文字; IPA)について.「#822. IPA の略史」 ([2011-07-28-1]),「#251. IPAのチャート」 ([2010-01-03-1]) でも概要に触れたが,今回は McArthur (523--24) の英語学辞典より説明を引こう.

INTERNATIONAL PHONETIC ALPHABET, short form IPA. An alphabet developed by the International Phonetic Association to provide suitable symbols for the sounds of any language. The symbols are based on the Roman alphabet, with further symbols created by inverting or reversing roman letters or taken from the Greek alphabet. Such symbols are designed to harmonize as far as possible with standard Roman symbols, so as to fit as unobtrusively as possible into a line of print. The main characters are supplemented when necessary by diacritics. The first version of the alphabet was developed in the late 19c by A. E. Ellis, Paul Passy, Henry Sweet, and Daniel Jones from a concept proposed by Otto Jespersen. It has been revised from time to time, most recently in 1989 (see accompanying charts). The IPA is sufficiently rich to label the phonemes of any language and to handle the contrasts between them, but its wide range of exotic symbols and diacritics makes it difficult and expensive for printers and publishers to work with. As a result, modifications are sometimes made for convenience and economy, for example in ELT learners' dictionaries. Phoneme symbols are used in phonemic transcription, either to provide a principled method of transliterating non-Roman alphabets (such as Russian, Arabic, Chinese), or to provide an alphabet for a previously unwritten language. The large number of diacritics makes it possible to mark minute shades of sound as required for a narrow phonetic transcription. The alphabet has not had the success that its designers hoped for, in such areas as the teaching of languages (especially English) and spelling reform. It is less used in North America than elsewhere, but is widely used as a pronunciation aid for EFL and ESL, especially by British publishers and increasingly in British dictionaries of English. The pronunciation in the 2nd edition of the OED (1989) replaces an earlier respelling system with IPA symbols.


 19世紀末の名立たる音声学者・言語学者によって作られた IPA は,その後,日本にももたらされ,英語教育の重要な一端を担うことになった.音声学・音韻論などの学術的な文脈でも確立したが,教育の現場では北米においてメジャーではなかったし,現在の日本の英語教育においても IPA に基づく「発音記号」はかつてほど一般的に教えられているわけではないようだ.
 そもそも,ある言語の発音を表記するといっても,そこには様々な立場がある.音声表記と音素表記とでは言語音に対する姿勢がまるで異なるし,それと密接に関連する narrow transcription と broad transcription の区別も著しい (cf. 「#669. 発音表記と英語史」 ([2011-02-25-1])) .
 IPA が公表されてから130年ほどが経つが,言語音の表記を巡る問題は,音声学・音韻論の理論と言語教育の実践との複雑な絡み合いのなかで,容易に解決するものではないだろう.言語とは,かくも精妙な記述対象である.
 なお,上の引用内では IPA の最新版は1989年となっているが,これは McArthur 編の辞典の出版が1992年のため.現在ではこちらからダウンロードできる2015年版が最新である.  *

 ・ McArthur, Tom, ed. The Oxford Companion to the English Language. Oxford: OUP, 1992.

Referrer (Inside): [2019-04-09-1]

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