• Air goes up from the lungs, through the windpipe (or trachea),
• through the larynx, where it must pass between two small muscular folds called the vocal folds,
• From there it goes into the pharynx,
• and then into the mouth or the nose, more accurately the oral tract and the nasal tract.
• If the vocal folds are pulled apart, air will flow freely, whereas if they are close together and let loose, the pressure of the airstream will
• Sounds in which vocal folds are vibrating are voiced.
• Sounds in which vocal cords are not vibrating are voiceless.
• Vocal folds in action
• Compare [sssss] and [zzzzzz], or [fff] and [vvvv].
• Feel the vibrations at your larynx.
• Stop up ears: [ffffvvvvvfffff]
• Minimal pairs of words:
• fat, vat
• thigh, thy
• Sue, zoo