The Role of /s/ Duration as a Perceptual Cue for Gay-sounding Male Speech.
"This thesis is an experimental analysis of the role that /s/ duration plays in how listeners perceive male sexual orientation based on speech. With listener responses measured as both a categorical (forced choice) response and a continual mean 'gayness' score, listeners' perception of a man as gay increased substantially with the longer /s/ durations in word-initial, stressed /skV/ and /spV/ environments. Listener participants heard one of 3 /s/ durations of a man whose sexual orientation had been perceived as neutral. ANOVA analysis showed that listeners who heard the longer /s/ durations perceived the man as sounding 'gayer'. In addition, multiple regression analysis showed that listeners who heard the longer /s/ durations were significantly more likely to judge the speaker as sounding 'gay'."