Alabama 13

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BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION

AGE: 24

DATE OF BIRTH (DD/MM/YYYY): 1983

PLACE OF BIRTH: Birmingham, Alabama

GENDER: male

ETHNICITY: African-American

OCCUPATION: student and a member of the Army National Guard

EDUCATION: When recorded, subject was a college student.

AREA(S) OF RESIDENCE OUTSIDE REPRESENTATIVE REGION FOR LONGER THAN SIX MONTHS:

Subject has lived in Alabama all of his life, mostly in Coosa County.

OTHER INFLUENCES ON SPEECH: N/A

The text used in our recordings of scripted speech can be found by clicking here.

RECORDED BY: Daydrie Hague

DATE OF RECORDING (DD/MM/YYYY): 11/12/2007

PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF SCRIPTED SPEECH: N/A

TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A

DATE OF TRANSCRIPTION (DD/MM/YYYY): N/A

ORTHOGRAPHIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH:

I’m from Coosa County, but I was originally born in Birmingham, Alabama. I don’t remember which hospital. I think it was Cooper Green, but I spent, like, fifteen years in Coosa County and, like, about five to six years in Birmingham. My parents are from Birmingham, originally. My momma, she was born in Detroit, but my daddy, he’s born and raised from Birmingham. My father and my mother about 26, two or three years older than me, and they stayed in Montgomery for about, about three years. And then they moved back to Birmingham when they had me. And, my parents, both of them graduated high school. My father, he was a, he played football in high school. And my mother, she was in the band. I think she was, like uh, a drum major or something. But, my father, he had a chance to play college football, but he didn’t really have anybody that liked to talk to him and teach him right from wrong because his mother passed when he was about, when he was about ten. So, he ended up just, just taking construction work, and my mother, she, she graduated high school and she also was uh, and she also, her mother also passed when she was real young. I don’t know what age she was but, but her mother passed and her father he married another woman and that woman, she raised my mother and her other siblings. And, I played sports in high school, I went to uh, Coosa County Central, Central Coosa, it’s near Alex City.  And I played football and basketball for four years. And, I won a championship when I was in 10th grade, and I won another state championship when I was in the 11th grade. And my 12th grade year I hurt my knee when I went to a basketball camp so I wasn’t able to perform the way I wanted to perform so that I could get colleges to look at me in regards to playing college basketball. So, I ended up going to Alabama State University my first year of college, and I really didn’t like it so, so I transferred to Auburn and I tried out for the basketball team and I didn’t make it my first tryout, but I tried out the following year and I made the team. I only played like a half a year, because my girlfriend at the time, she had got pregnant with my son, so I quit and I started back working. I worked at Walmart before I started playing so I just went back there. I worked in produce, and me and my wife, we had a son and I decided I wanted to join the military. So I did, I joined the Air Force National Guard, because I needed the extra money and I needed the benefits so I could support my family, my new family. And I really wanted to play basketball because all my life I loved basketball. I watched every basketball game came on, on the weekend weekday I watched it. And my father, he bought me and my brother a basketball goal and set it out in the yard, but he was kind of mean to us, so when he was setting it up he wanted us to help but, we were about, 8 to 12 at the time, and we really didn’t, we really didn’t care about nothing but playing, so we weren’t serious, so he used to holler at us a lot.  I believe he was kind of stressed because he worked two jobs and my mother, she really didn’t work. So, I believe he was kind of stressed because he worked, like, the overnight shift and then he had to get up in the morning, well he had to get off work in the morning and go work at uh, at a trailer park. He fixed on trailers, so we didn’t really get to spend too much time with my father because he was mainly sleep during the day, and we got home from school he was, he was gone to work or either sleep. But, now that I’ve grown up and had a chance to talk to my father, like I understood his struggle and I understood what he was going through, just uh, just to take care of his family, and I respect that. And also, I want to try and do that for my son but also I want to be there for him and try to give him the things that I didn’t have growing up as a child.

TRANSCRIBED BY: Monica Bland

DATE OF TRANSCRIPTION (DD/MM/YYYY): 27/07/2009

PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH: N/A

TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A

DATE OF TRANSCRIPTION (DD/MM/YYYY): N/A

SCHOLARLY COMMENTARY:

The subject’s speech is characterized by the lax consonant action and linkage of many Southern speakers. There is little plosive release in consonants in the terminal position resulting in a glottal sound, an irregular use of r, and the typical i/e substitution where you hear “tin” for “ten,” etc. There is a consistent addition of “sh” to the “str” cluster, as in “shtroking” for “stroking,” as well as an elimination of the velar plosive k in words like “expensive,” so you hear “espensive.” The Southern drawl is evident in the subject’s speech in the elongation of certain vowels, even ones which are not characteristically long, as in words like “passed” and “son.” The elongation is a means of communicating stress and meaning.

COMMENTARY BY: Daydrie Hague

DATE OF COMMENTARY (DD/MM/YYYY): 11/12/2007

The archive provides:

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  • Text of the speakers’ biographical details.
  • Scholarly commentary and analysis in some cases.
  • In most cases, an orthographic transcription of the speakers’ unscripted speech.  In a small number of cases, you will also find a narrow phonetic transcription of the sample (see Phonetic Transcriptions for a complete list).  The recordings average four minutes in length and feature both the reading of one of two standard passages, and some unscripted speech. The two passages are Comma Gets a Cure (currently our standard passage) and The Rainbow Passage (used in our earliest recordings).

 

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