Arkansas 1

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BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION

AGE: 52

DATE OF BIRTH (DD/MM/YYYY): 1948

PLACE OF BIRTH: Lavaca, Arkansas

GENDER: male

ETHNICITY: Caucasian

OCCUPATION: farmer/carpenter

EDUCATION: master’s degree in vocational education

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

Family moved to California when subject was 3, but they returned to the Arkansas/Missouri area when the subject was entering ninth grade. He has lived in Arkansas ever since.

OTHER INFLUENCES ON SPEECH:

His mother died when he was very young, and his speech is patterned after his father’s. Like his father before him, he farms and does carpentry work, although he also went on to get his undergraduate degree as well as a master’s degree in vocational education at the University of Arkansas/Fayetteville.

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

RECORDED BY: Mavourneen Dwyer

DATE OF RECORDING (DD/MM/YYYY): 2000

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 was born on a farm. I was born at home. My mother, uh, was a native of St. Louis. She was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri. Uh, my dad was born and raised in Lavaca, Arkansas. Uh, they met in San Diego, during the war, uh, got married and had me. And then they waited five years, had a set of twins; waited fifteen months, had a little girl; then waited five more years, had a little boy. Uh, about a year, or a year and a half after he, uh, the last little boy was born, my mother died of cancer. Uh, some of my earliest recollections, uh, may not be so much recollections that I have, but they are recollections that have been told to me. Uh, living on a farm, I guess my mother had me in a buggy one time. And took me out to the barn. And evidently was pushing me through the barn lot, and the bull’s — was in the same pasture — the same lot that she was in, and, uh, guess he decided that she didn’t belong there, so he chased her out, and, uh, tipped the buggy over, with me in it. Uh, so, I guess it’s kind of a miracle that I survived. [Laughs] And I can remember, uh, my parents telling me that when I was just at the crawlin’ stage, uh, there was an old well on the place. And it had a bunch of old boards on top of it. I remember crawlin’ up on that. Uh, I actually remember sittin’ on top of this well, and, uh, remember my mother, you know, running, you know [makes scream sound], you know, all scared. And, uh, so, anyway, she got me off the well, and, uh, I didn’t, I didn’t go down in it, but, uh, a lot of memories like that. I can remember, um, ’specially bein’ about 5 years old when the first set of kids came along after me, uh, all of the diapers, that we had. And we had, every window had a clothesline that left the house and went to, you know, a fence post or a pole or whatever. And, uh, diapers in the hallway, and diapers in the commode, diapers everywhere, so, uh, you couldn’t go to the bathroom without having to clean diapers, ’cause there was three in diapers all at the same time. Uh, went to a lot of different schools till I reached the ninth grade. There were two different years that I attended four different grade schools in the same year. Went, uh, to schools primarily in the, uh, San Francisco/Oakland/Bay area in California, and then, uh, if I wasn’t in school there, we’d move back to St. Louis and go to school in different schools in St. Louis, uh, around St. Louis and [unclear]. Uh, after, or startin’ in, the ninth grade, we moved to Greenwood, Arkansas, and, uh, my dad was a farmer and a carpenter. Basically, uh, I spent four years – that’s the longest that I spent at any one school, except for the University of Arkansas – four years in high school. Graduated, oh, I don’t know, top 10 percent, but not all that good. Came to the University in ’66, and graduated here in ’70, and then waited about ten, or, no, I guess it’s about 18 years I waited, came back and worked on my master’s. And got my master’s here at the University of Vocational Education. Currently, uh, I’m married. My wife’s name is Janice. We have a daughter whose name is Shannon. She’s about 27. She’s married, has a husband. Uh, his name’s Brett, uh, Brett Lawson. And no grandkids yet, but look forward to it soon. Uh, none yet. Uh, I basically now am employed at the University of Arkansas. Uh, I do little remodeling projects for homeowners around in the area, a little bit. Uh, I raise a few cows, and, uh, basically that’s, uh, pretty much the story of my life.

TRANSCRIBED BY: Jacqueline Baker

DATE OF TRANSCRIPTION (DD/MM/YYYY): 30/09/2007

PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH: N/A

TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A

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

SCHOLARLY COMMENTARY:

He speaks with a very narrow pitch range and a strongly rhotic coloring. He drops the “G” (starting, morning) as well as his final “d’s” (hold, told) and some of his medial consonants (“evurwhere” for “everywhere”). His vowels are often lengthened to diphthongs (band, bit, have, found, round), and he occasionally substitutes a schwa for a final consonant (window). The “i/e” reversal is evident in words like “end,” “many” and “heavy.” Notice the pronunciation of “mericle” for “miracle.” Interestingly, the “a” sound gets substituted for “aI” hardly at all when the speaker is reading the “Rainbow Passage.” However, when he is recalling youthful memories, we begin to hear the substitution in shorter one-syllable words such as “five,” “my,” “by” and “high.”

COMMENTARY BY: Mavourneen Dwyer

DATE OF COMMENTARY (DD/MM/YYYY): 2000

The archive provides:

  • Recordings of accent/dialect speakers from the region you select.
  • 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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