England 69

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BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION

AGE: 28

DATE OF BIRTH (DD/MM/YYYY): 1979

PLACE OF BIRTH: Portslade, East Sussex

GENDER: female

ETHNICITY: white

OCCUPATION: N/A

EDUCATION: private school and university

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

Subject is currently living in Brighton.

OTHER INFLUENCES ON SPEECH:

Subject describes herself as working class, having grown up in a low-income area.  She notes that while she attended private school, her dialect veered closer to contemporary RP because of an “overwhelming social pressure” to conform to the same speech system as the vast majority of her fellow pupils.  She also remarks that her accent derives more from the general populace of her social environment than her family members or close personal friends, many of whom speak an Estuary variant considerably closer to Standard RP.

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

RECORDED BY: Marina Tyndall

DATE OF RECORDING (DD/MM/YYYY): 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 think that my accent is um, a true reflection of where I come from in the social spectrum in this country … and I have quite … in my area.  And I have quite a strong political belief that I won’t alter my accent for other people despite having been sent to a private school … erm … my family having aspirations, to fit in with a much more conventional, accepted way of behaving, I’ve never accepted that, I want to be accepted for who I really am, and if people find it threatening, that’s not really my problem.  Erm, I’ve always been … corrected, as most children are, erm, in this country by my parents for not speaking ‘The Queen’s English’, er dropping my aitches and ‘t’s, though in words for a reason despite the fact that lots of other letters like g, h and other expressions in English language are silent deliberately, umm, to decide on your own to do that … is in some way anarchistic, so it should be stamped out or otherwise you won’t be allowed to take part in polite society.  I don’t really hold a lot of…I don’t think that idea holds a lot of water, I still argue with my dad about it. He tells my brothers off, for dropping their ‘t’s and says “I know your sister does it, but she’s too big to tell off,” and I’ll say you know, it’s, it’s not fair to say that to me, when I grew up in a place in Portslade, where it’s normal to speak like this.  If I’m in, ah, working in a shop, in my shop I work in, I always try, er, to be polite and I probably try and sound a little bit more innocent than I really am to try and mask the threatening effects, but I won’t try and speak in a more proper way to get respect.

TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A

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

PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH: N/A

TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A

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

SCHOLARLY COMMENTARY:

Subject is an excellent Estuary example. The GOOSE vowel is advanced (almost fronted) to a greater extent than the centralized variant in Contemporary RP. It has almost no discernible lip rounding and is not far from Primary Cardinal 2. She exhibits an unrounded GOAT vowel, with both elements quite centralised. Her “g” is dropped from -ing verb participle endings. There is an Intervocalic glottal replacement of /t/. (Other /t/’s are often slightly dentalised or affricated.) She exhibits an elision of third syllables, and coalescence, or crunching of /t/ and /r/ at the final syllable onset of “territory.” There is alveolar-palatal coalescence, resulting in an dropped yod and affricate onset for “Duke.” (This is very common in Estuary accents and not unusual in Contemporary RP.) There is a replacement of dark l with FOOT vowel. She shows a labiodental variant of both voiced and unvoiced “th,” especially in medial position. There is a fairly open DRESS vowel relative to RP, often heading toward SQUARE. There is also a slight retraction of NURSE (see “beautiful bird”), toward a long STRUT. She shows a retracted first element and slight monophthongisation of PRICE vowel. Also note that SQUARE is usually monophthonised. Lastly, “cure” at the end of the set passage is realized with THOUGHT vowel.

COMMENTARY BY: Marina Tyndall

DATE OF COMMENTARY (DD/MM/YYYY): 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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