DATE OF BIRTH (DD/MM/YYYY): 14/06/1978
PLACE OF BIRTH: Pine Bluff, Arkansas
OCCUPATION: compliance specialist — international students and scholars
EDUCATION: three master’s degrees (MA in German and MA in English from the University of Arkansas; MA in teaching from Christian Brothers University)
AREAS OF RESIDENCE OUTSIDE REPRESENTATIVE REGION FOR LONGER THAN SIX MONTHS:
The subject lived in Collierville, Tennessee, for four years. The rest of his life has been spent in Arkansas (20 years in Fayetteville and the rest in Pine Bluff).
OTHER INFLUENCES ON SPEECH:
The subject says that spoken grammar rules were encouraged in his upbringing.
RECORDED BY: Ben Corbett
DATE OF RECORDING (DD/MM/YYYY): 28/01/2020
PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF SCRIPTED SPEECH: N/A
TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A
DATE OF TRANSCRIPTION (DD/MM/YYYY): N/A
ORTHOGRAPHIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH:
So when I was six years old, my, uh, my folks bought a new house out in, um, out in rural Jefferson County. Uh, and the place did not at the time belong to — it wasn’t its own town. Uh, it was incorporated into the city of Pine Bluff, uh, and didn’t become a part of, uh, the city of White Hall until after I was out of high school, which would’ve been sometime after 1996. Uh, in any case — so my parents, uh, bought that house out in, um, out in rural Jefferson County off of Highway 104. And, uh, it wasn’t incorporated into White Hall until after 1996. People just said you lived out in the county. And, um, I really loved growing up out there. My parents had, uh, had a house on five acres of wooded land, uh, mostly pine trees. And I, I grew up just kinda playing out in the woods. And there were neighborhood children, uh, you know, I’d play with; everybody kinda played out in the woods. And it was, it was the kind of an upbringing that you, you think about from like a generation back. Um, like in the summertime you’d, you know, pack a pack, a backpack with, uh, you know, snack and a canteen, a pocket knife, whatever, and you’d be gone for the day. And, uh, you know, take your bicycle, and, and you’d be out doin’, you know, God knows what; uh, and, uh, I remember riding, you know, out on the highway, and, and, uh, like riding far off from my house. Um, but like I remember going to like this little convenience store, which wasn’t that far away, but like crossing highways; my, my parents had no idea where I was. Uh, we’d play in creeks. Uh, you’d, you’d build little dams in the creek and, you know, catch crawdads and things like that and catch lizards. I was always scared of snakes. I never tried to catch a snake. But the — you’d build forts outta, outta limbs and, uh, and thatch it with pine needles.
I remember I got to be a little bit older — you know, you’d ride a little bit further. I, uh, I remember one time I climbed an, uh, uh, an old, abandoned water tower with my cousin, which is, which is absolutely crazy. We climbed all the way up to the, to the holding tank. And, and if either of us had slipped off that ladder, we’d ‘ve surely been killed, or slipped off the top of that thing. But just, you just, you just started climbing that ladder, and you just kept climbing. You were just looking at the, you know, the next rung that were gonna grab a hold of. Just climb to this kind of little deck that ran around the thing. And, uh, it had a little guard rail around it; we just sat there from as high as a water tower is, just sittin’ and lookin’ out at the woods and the town and stuff. There was, uh, a little, a little well house with a spring, uh, and just, you know, go down to the little well house and drink outta the spring. And, uh, I mean it was a, it was a kinda of a, kind of a idyllically free — free as in a sense of freedom — childhood. I mean it’s, it’s almost like, like that movie Stand By Me. You know, you just get up with your buddies, and you’d be, you’d be gone all day, and you’d get into, you know, whatever mischief you got into out during the day. Playin’, people got hurt, you know, once in a while — I mean nothin’ ever bad. Nobody ever got — well, I broke my arm once. Bad enough I guess. But, um, it was a happy way to grow up. It was a lot of fun. It, it felt safe; it didn’t feel scary or dangerous or anything like that. Um, and I, I took my — my own son now is, is six, and I think that, that, that he will, he will never, he will never know the kinda, that kinda childhood freedom. It’s, it’s just not ever gonna be like that for him, uh, which is sad, but it was good way to grow up.
TRANSCRIBED BY: Ben Corbett
DATE OF TRANSCRIPTION (DD/MM/YYYY): 28/01/2020
PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH: N/A
TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A
DATE OF TRANSCRIPTION (DD/MM/YYYY): N/A
The subject uniformly monophthongizes the /aɪ/ (PRICE) diphthong (private, liking, finally, implied, time, Pine Bluff, idea, side, ride, tried, might, fine, climbing, childhood, why, bicycle). The archetypal Southern vowel change of /ɛ/ (DRESS) to /ɪ/ (KIT) occurs (when, then, expensive). The ending /g/ of -ing words often drops (suffering, paying, upbringing, crossing). The subject maintains a liquid U; for example, he inserts a yod (a Y sound) after some words beginning with either /n/, /s/, or /d/ (new, superb, duke). The subject also realizes a voiceless “w” sound, /hw/ (which, what, when, White Hall).
A slight /ʃ/ (sh) occurs when the consonant cluster /st/ begins a word (strut, strong). A schwa /ə/ (COMMA) precedes the /u/ (GOOSE) vowel (goose, huge). This schwa also precedes the /oʊ/ (GOAT) (so, no). Final consonants are sometimes dropped in ending consonant clusters (first, old). The /a/ vowel (BATH) becomes /eɪ/ (FACE) in the word “can’t.” The schwa also immediately follows that /aʊ/ (MOUTH) (house, town). Initial /p/ receives extra plosivity (pine, pack). Lastly, the word “you” can become “yuh.”
COMMENTARY BY: Ben Corbett
DATE OF COMMENTARY (DD/MM/YYYY): 28/01/2020
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).
For instructional materials or coaching in the accents and dialects represented here, please go to Other Dialect Services.