Bias of affect in Estonian lexis and what to do with it


A practical need to make Estonian synthetic speech more natural and easier to follow has directed researcher attention to human emotions as reflected in natural speech. The article contemplates how the emotion or, more generally, affectivity of the author of a written sentence could be recognized from lexical cues. It appears that it is not only content words (nouns, verbs, adjectives) that deserve attention in this respect, but also various function words (pronouns, deictics, intensifiers etc.) Five classes of the lexical bias of affect are distinguished: descriptive emotion vocabulary, expressive emotion vocabulary, evaluative markers, presence markers and intensity markers; also, their contribution to the expression either of the author of the utterance or of the protagonist of the sentence is demonstrated. A conclusion is made that different tones of voice should probably be synthesized for the author’s authentic emotions (anger, joy, sadness, fear, surprise) and for the less expressive emotions resonating to those of the protagonist, including, e.g., a brisk, sharp or dull tone of voice. The main message of the article is that recognition of the lexical bias of affect should begin from the function words referring to the presence of the author of the utterance.


Altrov, Rene, Pajupuu, Hille 2008. The Estonian emotional speech corpus: release 1. – The Third Baltic Conference on Human Language Technologies. Vilnius: Vytauto Didžiojo Universitetas; Lietuviu kalbos institutas, lk 9-15.


Bednarek, Monika 2008. Emotion Talk across Corpora. Houndmills-New York: Palgrave Macmillan.


Bestgen, Yves 1994. Can emotional valence in stories be determined from words? – Cognition and Emotion, kd 7 (1), lk 21-36.


Biber, Douglas, Finegan, Edward 1989. Styles of stance in English: Lexical and grammatical marking of evidentiality and affect. – Text, kd 9, nr 1, lk 93-124.


Erelt, Mati, Erelt, Tiiu, Ross, Kristiina 1997. Eesti keele käsiraamat. Tallinn: Eesti Keele Instituut.


Foolen, Ad 1997. The expressive function of language: Towards a cognitive semantic approach. – S. Niemeier, R. Dirven (toim), The Language of Emotions. Conceptualization, Expression, and Theoretical Foundation. Amsterdam-Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company, lk 15-32.


Hunston, Susan, Thompson, Geoff (toim) 2000. Evaluation in Text. Authorical Stance and the Construction of Discourse. Oxford: Oxford University Press.


Kallas, Jelena, Tuulik, Maria 2011. Eesti keele põhisõnavara sõnastik: ajalooline kontekst ja koostamispõhimõtted. – Eesti Rakenduslingvistika Ühingu aastaraamat, nr 7. Tallinn: Eesti Keele Sihtasutus, lk 59-75.


Kerge, Krista, Pajupuu, Hille, Altrov, Rene 2007. Tekst, kontekstuaalsus ja kultuur. – Keel ja Kirjandus, nr 8, lk 624-637.


Kerge, Krista, Pajupuu, Hille, Tamuri, Kairi 2008. Where should TTS-synthesizer pause and breath? – The Third Baltic Conference on Human Language Technologies. Vilnius: Vytauto Didžiojo Universitetas; Lietuviu kalbos institutas, lk 143-149.


Kerge, Krista, Pajupuu, Hille 2010. Text-types in speech technology and language teaching. – B. Alonso, J. L., Dolores González Álvarez, Ú. K. Torrado, A. E. Martínez Insua jt (toim), Analizar datos > Describir variación / Analysing data > Describing variation. Vigo: Universidade de Vigo, lk 380-390.


Lakoff, George, Johnson, Mark 2011. Metafoorid, mille järgi me elame. Tallinn: Tallinna Ülikooli Kirjastus.


Lazarus, Richard S. 1991. Emotion and Adaption. – M. Jenkins, K. Oatley, N. L. Stein (toim), Human Emotions: A Reader. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers, lk 73-78.


Mihkla, Meelis 2007. Kõne ajalise struktuuri modelleerimine eestikeelsele tekst-kõne sünteesile – Modelling the temporal structure of speech for the Estonian text-to-speech synthesis. (Dissertationes linguisticae Universitatis Tartuensis 8.) Tartu: Tartu Ülikooli Kirjastus.


Ochs, Elinor 1988. Culture and Language Development: Language Aquisition and Language Socialisation in a Samoan Village. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


Osgood, Charles E., Suci, George J., Tannenbaum, Percy H. [1957] 1975. The Measurement of Meaning. Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois Press.


Pajupuu, Hille, Kerge, Krista, Altrov, Rene 2012. Lexicon-based detection of emotion in different types of text: Preliminary remarks. – Eesti Rakenduslingvistika Ühingu aastaraamat, nr 8. Tallinn: Eesti Keele Sihtasutus, lk 171- 184.


Pennebaker, James W. 2011. The Secret Life of Pronouns: What Our Words Say About Us. New York-Bloomsbury Press.


Picard, Rosalind W. 1997. Affective Computing. Mass.: The MIT Press.


Piolat, Annie, Bannour, Rachid 2009. An example of text analysis software (EMOTAIX-Tropes) use: the influence of anxiety on expressive writing. – Current Psychology Letters, kd 25, nr 2, lk 2-19.


Schnall, Simone 2005. The pragmatics of emotion language. – Psychological Inquiry, nr 16, lk 28-31.


Vainik, Ene 2002a. Kas eestlased on “kuumaverelised”? Eestlaste rahvalikust emotsioonikategooriast. – Emakeele Seltsi aastaraamat. Tallinn: Emakeele Selts, lk 63-86.


Vainik, Ene 2002b. Millest on tehtud eestlaste emotsioonisõnavara? – Keel ja Kirjandus, nr 8, lk 537-553.


Vainik, Ene 2010. Kuidas õpetada kõnesüntesaatorile empaatiat? Emotsiooni automaatse tuvastuse võimalustest eestikeelses kirjalikus lauses sisalduva info põhjal. – Eesti Rakenduslingvistika Ühingu aastaraamat, nr 6. Tallinn: Eesti Keele Sihtasutus, lk 327-347.


Vainik, Ene 2012. Kuidas määrata eesti keele sõnavara tundetoone? – Eesti Rakenduslingvistika Ühingu aastaraamat, nr 8. Tallinn: Eesti Keele Sihtasutus, lk 257-274.


Veski, Asta 1982. Eesti keele grammatika II. Tartu: Tartu Riiklik Ülikool.


Wilce, James M. 2009. Language and Emotion. Cambridge-New York: Cambridge University Press.