Bermuda 1

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BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION

AGE: 26

DATE OF BIRTH (DD/MM/YYYY): 1980

PLACE OF BIRTH: Bermuda

GENDER: male

ETHNICITY: black

OCCUPATION: performing arts

EDUCATION: Subject has two bachelor’s degrees, in theatre and dance.

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

Subject attended private school in the UK (Northampton) and college in the United States (Nevada) for four years.

OTHER INFLUENCES ON SPEECH:

He left at age 15 to study in Northampton, England, for two years. He attended college for four years in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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

RECORDED BY: Phil Hubbard

DATE OF RECORDING (DD/MM/YYYY): 27/04/2006

PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF SCRIPTED SPEECH: N/A

TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A

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

ORTHOGRAPHIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH:

OK, well, I was born in Bermuda and … Bermuda … is a — we — a lot of people get it confused with the Caribbean and, so, whenever I say I am from Bermuda, then people always think that I live down by  Jamaica and Barbados and people get it confused with Barbuda … but it’s not, it’s up by North Carolina, so it’s actually way up north, is away from the Caribbean, but we get classified with it because there’s no other place around it. But, Bermuda is … a 21-square-mile island, 20 miles long, 1 mile wide, and … you can get into a lot of trouble…when you’re younger, so, what my parents did was they got me into tennis, and, I played tennis all throughout my youth, and…later on as I got older, I got invited to, to play for — to represent Bermuda in like, various tournaments and stuff abroad and even Davis Cup. So, I s– I lived in Bermuda until I was 15, I graduated from high school when I was 15, and my parents said, “Nope, that’s too young, you’re not going to University yet” cause I would get eaten alive. So, they sent me to England to a r– to a boarding school, a prepatory school, and I stayed there for 2 years, and then came back to Bermuda, and went to Bermuda College, and studied art and design and graphic design and … I did that for a while and that was nice, and then I was going to go to … to Florida … to Sarasota, to study graphic design some more, and then some things changed and I decided to come to Las Vegas and I’ve been in Las Vegas..for about 4 years now … and I think I’m going to go back to Bermuda, I really like it, I go back every Christmas and every summer, and um … the culture is just so different from any other place that I’ve been…and um, it’s influences from a lot of other cultures because..because of all the immigrants, it’s about … 50-60% black, and then we have some Portuguese, and we have um … obviously, the um, Great Britain is a influence in our culture as well, and even American, because even though we’re a British colony, and … we drive on the left-hand side of the road, but when you come it’s very Americanized we–all of our television channels are, are American, we get NBC and CBS and ABC and all the cable channels are all American. So, our mentality is very American, but we’re British at the same time, so it’s kind of — it’s kind of a cool place to be;  it ain’t no other place like that in the world, and that’s why I’m proud of it.

TRANSCRIBED BY: Faith Harvey

DATE OF TRANSCRIPTION (DD/MM/YYYY): 14/03/2008

PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH: N/A

TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A

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

SCHOLARLY COMMENTARY:

In sum, this is a fascinating dialect with features from Bermuda’s neighbors to the west in the United States and her original colonial inhabitants from the east in the UK. As the subject states in the interview, American TV is ubiquitous in Bermuda, accounting for some very American sounds in the dialect. Some characteristics of the dialect include:
– reduced or eliminated /r/ coloration in vowels and diphthongs with the /r/ sound (owner, force, course, work, tower). This RP-like characteristic is not consistent. Sometimes the /r/ sound is like General American (GenAm). (This may be the Western US influence from the subject’s university time.)
– fairly consistent use of an RP-like glide in the goat-set words (so, no, go, only, owner), but somewhat nasalized.
– conversion [θ ð] to [f], as in other dialects and accents of English; this is consistent with this speaker.
– force and some lot & cloth-set words are very similar to some New York City dialects. There is less /r/ color and a glide (dog, office, force). On the other hand, in some lot-set words, the speaker uses the back vowel heard in RP: job, for example.
– occasional reduction of the diphthong in face-set words in (daily) similar to
some Irish (and other UK) dialects.
– unusual “one-off” pronunciations of the word hurry; these are similar to [o] but with less lip rounding and of the word goose, similar to [y] as in French and Scottish.
– at times, for passages of many words, the dialect sounds like GenAm.

COMMENTARY BY: Phil Hubbard

DATE OF COMMENTARY (DD/MM/YYYY): 27/04/2006

The archive provides:

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  • 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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