Difference Between Phonetics and Phonology

Phonetics vs Phonology
 

Phonetics and Phonology are two terms that have to be understood with an understanding of the difference between them. It is important to know that phonetics deals with the study of the production of sounds. On the other hand, phonology deals with the study of the characteristics of sounds and their changes. This is the basic difference between phonetics and phonology. It is very important to remember that both phonetics and phonology belongs to the scientific study of a language which is known as linguistics. Linguistics is divided into four main parts as phonology, morphology, syntax and semantics. Phonetics comes under phonology as both are concerned with sound.

What is Phonetics?

Phonetics deals with the organs of sound production. The organs of sound production are mouth, tongue, throat, nose, lips and the palate. From these organs or parts in the mouth various sounds are produced. These sounds are called as gutturals, palatals, cerebrals, dentals, and labials. Gutturals are produced in the throat, palatals are produced from palate, cerebrals are produced at the roof of the palate, dentals from teeth, and labials from lips. However, if you take a look at the IPA, International Phonetic Alphabet, the classification for the place of origin or articulation of sound for consonants (pulmonic) is much more broad. They are as bilabial (lips), labio-dental (lips and teeth), dental (teeth), alveolar (alveolar ridge), post- alveolar, retroflex (tongue is curled back), palatal (palate: hard palate), velar (velum: soft palate), uvular, pharyngeal (pharynx), glottal (vocal chords).

What is Phonology?

Phonology, on the other hand, deals with the sounds and their changes due to various factors such as climatic change, race, influence of other languages and the like. There are various sound changes such as diphthongization, palatalization, metathesis, anaptyxis, apocope, syncope, vowel breaking, haplology, assimilation, dissimilation, and the like. It is interesting to note that phonology plays a vital role in the study of languages or linguistics. This is due to the fact that phonology paves the way or lays the foundation for morphology or word building.

On the other hand, it can be said that phonetics is the subset of phonology. This is due to the fact that phonology is based on phonetics. Hence, phonetics forms a very important part in the understanding of the origin of sounds. A philologist pays a great importance to both phonetics and phonology when he compares two or more languages and their characteristics. A linguist accepts various causes for sound or phonetic changes.

Difference Between Phonetics and Phonology

What is the difference between Phonetics and Phonology?

• Phonetics deals with the study of the production of sounds. On the other hand, phonology deals with the study of the characteristics of sounds and their changes. This is the basic difference between phonetics and phonology.

• Phonetics deals with the organs of sound production.

• Phonology, on the other hand, deals with the sounds and their changes.

• It can be said that phonetics is the subset of phonology.

These are the differences between phonetics and phonology.