The word vocalization refers to the making of a noise through the use of vocal cords It can refer to several different things:
- In animals, vocalization is a means of communication generated in many cases by their primitive versions of vocal cords. See: animal vocalization and animal communication.
- In birds, it may be achieved by whistling but can communicate a number of things including danger.
- It is also used to describe the noises made via the blowhole of mammalian sea creatures such as whales and porpoises.
- In humans, it is a special means of communication called speech.
- In languages with consonantal alphabets (sometimes inaccurately termed abjads), vocalization refers to the process of adding vowel markers (Arabic tashkil, Hebrew niqqud). eg Arabic alphabet, Tiberian vocalization, Syriac alphabet.
- In phonology it can refer to the replacement of a consonant sound with a vowel sound, e.g. [mɪok] for milk in many accents of English (see L-vocalization) or [hiːɐ] for hier in German.
- Vocal music