Bangladesh 6

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BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION

AGE: 30

DATE OF BIRTH (DD/MM/YYYY): 28/02/1990

PLACE OF BIRTH: Sunamganj, Sylhet, Bangladesh

GENDER: male

ETHNICITY: Sylheti

OCCUPATION: teacher

EDUCATION: master’s degree

AREAS OF RESIDENCE OUTSIDE REPRESENTATIVE REGION FOR LONGER THAN SIX MONTHS: N/A

OTHER INFLUENCES ON SPEECH:

In Sylhet, where the subject was born, brought up, and completed all his education, people speak the Sylheti language (also known as Sylhoti), which is distinct from Bengali, the state language of Bangladesh. In Sylhet, most people, if not all, have relatives residing in England. Therefore, Sylhetis are keen to learn English to talk to their British relatives who do not speak Sylheti. The Sylheti language has the English guttaral sound /x/, as in “loch,” but does not have the /v/ sound; for the latter, some use the /b/ sound instead. They may also pronounce /u/ for the /o/ vowel, and some are unable to distinguish between the /e/ and the /æ/ vowel sounds.

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

RECORDED BY: subject (under supervision of Amin Rahman)

DATE OF RECORDING (DD/MM/YYYY): 23/10/2020

PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF SCRIPTED SPEECH:

wel, hɪərs ə ˈstɔː.ri fər ju: ˈse.ra ˈper.i wəz ə ˈvet.er.nər.i nɜːs huː hæd biːn ˈwoːk.ɪŋ ˈdeɪ.li ət ən old zuː ɪn ə de.ˈzo:.tɪd ˈdɪ.strɪkt əf ðə ˈterɪ.tor.i, so ʃi wəz ˈver.i ˈhæp.i tʊ stɑːt ə nɪuː dʒɒb æt ə suː.ˈpɜːb ˈpraɪ.vɪt ˈpræk.tɪs ɪn nɔːθ skweə nɪə ðə dIuk striːt ˈtaʊ.wər. ðæt ˈe.riə wəz mʌtʃ ˈnɪə.rə fər hə ænd mɔː tə hə ˈlaɪ.kɪŋ. ˈiːv.ᵊn so, ɒn hə ˈfɜːst ˈmɔːn.ɪŋ, ʃi felt strest. ʃi e:t ə boʊl əf ˈpɒr.ɪdʒ, tʃekt ˈhɜː.self ɪn ðə ˈmɪ.ror ænd wɒʃt hə fe:s ɪn ə ˈhʌ.ri. ðen ʃi pʊt ɒn ə ple:ɪn ˈjel.o dres ænd ə fliːs ˈdʒæk,ɪt, pɪkd ʌp hər kɪt ænd ˈhe.dɪd fə hər ˈwoːk.

wen ʃi ɡɒt ðeə, ðeə wəz ə ˈwʊ.mən wɪθ ə ɡuːs ˈweɪt.ɪŋ fərr. ðə ˈwʊ.mən ɡev ˈse.ra æn o.ˈfɪʃ. ɪəl ˈle.tə frəm ðə vet. ðə ˈle.tər ɪm.ˈplaɪd ðæt ðə ˈæ.nɪm.ᵊl kʊd bi ˈsʌf.rɪŋ frəm ə reə ˈfɔːm əf fʊt æn maʊθ dɪ. ziːz, wɪtʃ wəz sə.ˈpraɪz.ɪŋ, bɪˈkɒz ˈnɔː.mə.li jɪu wʊd ˈəʊn.li ɪk.ˈspekt tə ˈsiː ɪt ɪn ə dɒɡ ɔːr ə ɡo:t. ˈse.rə wəz ˌsen.tɪ.ˈmen.tᵊl, so ðɪs ˈme:d hə fiːl ˈsɒr.i fə ðə ˈbɪuː.tə.fᵊl bɜːd.

bɪ.ˈfɔ lɔŋ, ðæt ˈɪtʃ.i ɡuːs bɪ.ˈɡæn tə strat ə.ˈraʊnd ðə ˈɒf.ɪs laɪk ə ˈluː.na.tɪk, wɪtʃ me:d æn ʌn.ˈsæn. ɪ.tor.i mes. ðə ɡuːs ˈoʊ.nə, ˈmer.i ˈhær.ɪ.son, kept ˈkɔːl.ɪŋ, ˈkɔ.ma, ˈkɔ.ma, wɪtʃ ˈse.ra θɔːt wəz æn ɒd tʃɔɪs fər ə ne:m. ˈkɔ.ma wəz strɒŋ ænd hɪuːdʒ, so ɪt wʊd te:k sʌm fɔːs tə træp hə, bʌt ˈse.ra hæd ə ˈdɪ.frənt ˈaɪ.ˈdɪə. ˈfɜːst ʃi raɪd ˈdʒent.li ˈstro.kɪŋ ðə ɡuːsez ˈləʊ.ə bæk wɪð hə pɑːm, ðen ˈsɪŋ.ɪŋ ə tjuːn tə hə. ˈfaɪ.nəl.i, ʃi əd.ˈmɪ.nɪs.tərd ˈiː.θə. hə ˈe.fo:rts wə nɒt ˈfɪu.taɪl. ɪn no taɪm, ðə ɡuːs bɪ.ˈɡæn tə taɪə, so ˈse.rə wəz ˈe:.bᵊl tə ho:ld ˈɒn.tə ˈkɔ.ma æn ɡɪv hər ə rɪ.ˈlæks.ɪŋ bɑθ.

wʌns ˈser.ə hæd mæ.ˈnedʒd tə be:ð ðə ɡuːs, ʃi weɪpt hər ɒ:f wɪθ ə klɒθ ænd le:ɪd hər ɒn hə raɪt sa:ɪd. ðe ˈse.rə kən.ˈfɜːmd ðə vets daɪəɡ.ˈnəʊ.sɪs. ˈɒl.most ɪ.ˈmiː.dɪət.li, ʃi rɪ.ˈmem.bərd æn ɪ.ˈfekt.ɪv ˈtriːt.men ðæt rɪ.ˈkwaɪd ha tə ˈme.ʒə aʊt ə lɒt əf ˈmed. ɪ.sɪn. ˈse.rə wɔːnd ðæt ðɪs kɔːs ɒf ˈtriːt.men maɪt bi ek.ˈspen.sɪv ˈaɪ.ðə faɪv ɔː sɪks ˈtaɪmz ðə kɒst ɒf ˈpen.ɪ. sɪ.lɪn. aɪ kɑːnt ɪ.ˈma:.dʒɪn ˈpeɪ.ɪŋ so mʌtʃ, bʌt ˈmɪ.sɪs. ˈhær.ɪ.sən ə mɪ.lɪo.ˈneə ˈlɔː.jɪə ˈθɔːt ɪt wəz ə feə praɪs fər ə kɪo.

TRANSCRIBED BY: Amin Rahman

DATE OF TRANSCRIPTION (DD/MM/YYYY): 23/10/2020

ORTHOGRAPHIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH:

Hello, I’m a high school teacher. I’m from Sunamganj District of Sylhet Division. I grew up in Sunamganj and studied up to S.Sc Level there. Then I came to Sylhet and completed my H.SC here. After that, I got admitted at Shah Jalal University of Science and Technology Sylhet. I completed my graduation and post-graduation from this university.

I like to sing and write lyrics, and I also like to travel around my country; and I like to make new friends and also enjoy talking to people — to new people — and I have a special interest to travel in the water land area, especially like Tangor Haor [marshy wetland], one of the, uh, “Ramsar” sites here in Bangladesh declared by UNESCO. And I also like fish and many kinds of like water leaves and species, and also I enjoy nature, and I want to help the nature and be with the nature, because nature is our friend and it is, uh, the source of our living in many ways. So we have to help the nature and keep it neat and clean. That’s why we have to be a friend of nature.

[Subject speaks Bengali]: Aami bibhinno dhoroner gaan shuntey pochhondo kori ebong shundor shundor jaygay ghurtey – bhromon kortey pochhondo kori. Ami nuton nuton manusher shathey kawtha boltey bhalobashi ebong tader shatehy ami shomoy katatey pochhondo kori ebong bibhinno jawlashoy elakay haor baor Elkay ghurtey pochhondo kori ebong prokitikey ami bhalobashi awnek.

[English translation: I like to listen to different types of songs and like to travel to beautiful places. I love to talk to new people. I like to spend time with them and like to travel in the water lands – the haors [marshy wetlands] and baors, and I love nature very much].

[Subject speaks Sylheti]: Syloti mathkhota amar khub bhala lage. Duniar ar hokhol bhasao amar bhala lage. Sylhet oilo gia Surma nodir faro obosthito. E shohoro bout cha bagan ache. Ache sundor shundor ghurar jaga. Ami ekhjon bhashabid oitam cai. Bishesh koria English bhashabid. Hokholre ami shuddho English math hikaitam cai.

[English translation: I like the Sylheti spoken language. I like other spoken languages too. Sylhet is situated on the bank of River Surma. There are so many tea gardens in this city. There are also many beautiful places to visit. I want to be a linguist, especially English linguist. I want to teach all standard English spoken language.]

TRANSCRIBED BY: subject (under supervision of Amin Rahman)

DATE OF TRANSCRIPTION (DD/MM/YYYY): 23/10/2020

PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH: N/A

TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A

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

SCHOLARLY COMMENTARY:

The subject has overcome some of the problems Sylhetis face when speaking English and is quite conversant with all the English consonant sounds. But, like most people from Bangladesh, he sometimes uses the wrong vowel length, i.e., short vowel sounds instead of the long vowel sounds, and vice versa, which can be seen in the phonetic transcription of his reading of Comma Gets a Cure, which has been provided. Unlike many Sylhetis, he speaks his L2 language (Bengali) without an accent. The audio sample contains recordings of the scripted English text (L3), unscripted English speech, Bengali speech (L2), and Sylheti speech (L1).

COMMENTARY BY: Amin Rahman

DATE OF COMMENTARY (DD/MM/YYYY): 24/10/2020

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).

For instructional materials or coaching in the accents and dialects represented here, please go to Other Dialect Services.

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