Re: Labs, When...


No more masturbating to unequal marriage.

Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 7:02 AM
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Oops, post stomping has its victims.

Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 7:05 AM
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Gay? I am your father, dammit!

Posted by: Lyle, the Effeminate Heterosexual | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 7:19 AM
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Video is starting to eat my old computer, as in proc temp rising 15-20 degrees. has become impossible, and I usually have to keep an eye on the gauges.

Would have liked to watch that, cause Japan!. Uhh, one theory about oppressed peoples (women in Japan) habitually using a higher register.

Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 7:37 AM
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Using a higher voice is an indicator for deference/politeness in Japanese men as well as women, though it's more much obvious in women. I used to notice my own register changing markedly depending on the person I was talking to, especially on the phone, and my ex used to speak in a higher voice when he needed to be polite to someone.

Posted by: Ume | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 7:58 AM
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And not just pitch. Not a linguist, but harsher vs softer consonants, as in "boku" for males, and "watashi/atashi" for females.

Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 8:06 AM
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When I get in a really angry argument with someone (which has happened maybe 5 times) I have to pay active attention to my voice or it'll turn into a high pitched squeaking noise only dogs can hear.

Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 8:11 AM
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Because you only want to summon the dogs as a last resort.

Posted by: My Alter Ego | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 8:17 AM
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I can't listen to sound at work, but if I notice anything about the difference between gay and straight American men's voices, it's more variability of pitch. Women seem to me to vary their vocal pitch a fair amount, men from other countries the same, and some but not all gay men; straight American men tend to be very flat sounding, all on the same note.

On the other hand, I have no idea, because I have completely broken gaydar for anyone where I don't actually have direct knowledge. It's not that I don't form opinions, but I'm no better than chance.

Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 8:26 AM
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There's actually been a ton of laboratory research on this done in sociophonetics. I'm in the middle of doing a similarish experiment on a non English language.

There's also stuff on women's speech in Japan.

Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 8:35 AM
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A stand-up comedian I saw in San Francisco (stereotypical lilt, a lot of his shtick about being gay, but also with a rural background) said something I'd paraphrase as "No, I don't know why I sound like this. All the cocks somehow create a cathedral-like soundscape in my mouth?"

My surmise is that it's for the same reason gay men tend to, or at least historically, put more attention and effort than straight men on their appearance - the stereotypical voice isn't necessarily higher or lower in pitch, but it's more presentational and engaging.

IKIHMTHB: I've heard radio stations in Japan that carry over the top 40 from the US, presented bilingually for whatever reason (cachet?), and the women's voices jumped octaves when switching into Japanese.

Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 9:22 AM
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There's an overtone of pleading whine that's "normal" for some kinds of impersonal speech by women in CZ, drives me nuts, I hate it. I think 11 is right, that it's the speech version of dressing carefully.

Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 9:29 AM
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Charleyhorse Zone?

Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 9:33 AM
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Inoue Miyako was excellent, and recommended by Homi K Babha. I did not like "Womenswords."

I like "presentational" or "dressing carefully" better than stuff like deferential, childlike, whining, or even "women's language" which Inoue pushes against. Or "gay voice."

AFAIK, and correct me if I am wrong, you won't find "boku" in an academic paper, say physics or genetics. IOW, a lot (but definitely not all) of what is called "women's language" in Japan is the formal superpolite hegemonic language of the ruling class. Or if you would rather, men have permission in many situations to use informal somewhat rebellious language forms.

Inoue also talks about "Tokyo Standard" and its dissemination to the countryside thru television; and the funny late 19th century inauguration of the idea of "women's language," (teen girls) done initially by male journalists in a context of formation of modernist (Fordist) gender roles.

Meiji/Taisho Journalist:"Girls Gone Wild! They talk like this!"
Meiji/Taisho Girls:" Wow, kawaii! Smart rich Tokyo girls talk like that? Let's talk like that times ten!"

I need to read more pragmatics. So enough.

Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 10:00 AM
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I'm always (nearly) mistaken for a woman by strangers on the phone, although face to face my voice, though light, isn't off the charts. Nobody ever told me I "sound gay" though, from which I conclude that "sounding gay" and sounding feminine are totally different things. Sounding camp, of course, is a thing, but I don't think that's what's at issue here.

Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 11:20 AM
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straight American men tend to be very flat sounding, all on the same note.

Some of us just have shitty vocal range. Like, 2/3 of an octave?

I hate my voice so much.

Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 11:41 AM
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My voice like my dad's uses an unusual tonal range for an American, but I've never been taken for gay. When I've suggested the possibility of my being gay or even taken for it as one of life's possibilities my women friends have always collapsed in laughter.

A choral director I was talking about spoken-voice pitch with said that Americans of both genders push down the pitch of their voices, which is associated in our culture with authority. My brother certainly always has done this.

Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 11:50 AM
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Ex recto, I'd say the stereotypical voice less about pitch and more about pitch variability.

Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 06-26-15 11:53 AM
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17: My professional "I am an expert" voice of authority is definitely intentionally lower than my normal speaking voice. Serious science happens at a lower octave than everyday life.

Posted by: antipodestrian | Link to this comment | 06-27-15 1:33 AM
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Not just science, Margaret Thatcher* had voice coaching to lower her pitch for public speaking.

*No, she didn't do serious science, she worked briefly for a plastics company and then developing emulsifiers for ice cream.

Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 06-27-15 5:06 AM
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I had some voice training for when I worked in a call centre. I think it could have been quite useful for some people. It wasn't about changing the pitch of your voice in general, but it did cover:

slowing down.
not raising, or even dropping, your voice at the end of questions.

The latter specifically so you could ask people questions [grammatically], but actually be telling them what to do [prosodically].

I notice that I use much more variation in pitch, and a much higher voice talking to xelA. That's stereotypical 'talking to children' of course. I suspect it's creeping into my ordinary speech, though.

On the OP, ironically, the two 'gayest' sounding men I know are both straight. I do, also, think that a lot of American men, of whatever sexual orientation, sound gay to my ear. Something about the use of a particular intonation patterns on questions, and, in a lot of men, a higher basic pitch than would be the norm here. By comparison, when I'm in the Czech Republic, I notice that the default basic pitch for a lot of male voices is lower than I would consider normal for the UK.

Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 06-27-15 5:42 AM
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My daughter used to say that I sounded incredibly gay on the rare occasions when I did American radio interviews. It had something to do with the fact that I tend to raise my pitch when I am trying to ask *politely* how anyone could possibly say anything quite so fucking stupid as the thing they have just said.

Posted by: Nworb Werdna | Link to this comment | 06-27-15 8:30 AM
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