Bangladesh 7

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BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION

AGE: 37

DATE OF BIRTH (DD/MM/YYYY): 21/09/1983

PLACE OF BIRTH: Sylhet, Bangladesh

GENDER: female

ETHNICITY: Sylheti/Bengali

OCCUPATION: school teacher (sociology)

EDUCATION: master’s degree

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

OTHER INFLUENCES ON SPEECH:

The subject’s first language is Sylheti. Bengali, the state language of Bangladesh, is her second language. English is her third language. Her English speech (L3) is influenced by both Sylheti (L1) and Bengali (L2). She also speaks a little Hindi and a little Korean.

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:

‘kɒ.mə gets ə ‘kɪ.o.  wæl, hɪərs ə ˈstɔː.ri fər ɪu ˈsa.ra ˈpe.ri wəz ə ˈvet.er.ɪ.nər.i nɜːs huː hæd biːn ˈwər. kɪŋ ˈdeɪ.li ət ən old zuː ɪn ə de.ˈza:.tɪd ˈdɪ.strɪkt əf ðə ˈte.rɪ.to.ri, so ʃi wəz ˈver.i ˈhæp.i tʊ stɑrt ə nɪuː dʒɒb æt ə ‘su.pərb ˈpraɪ.vɪt ˈpræk.tɪs ɪn nɔːθ skweər neər ðə dIuk striːt ˈtaʊ.wər. ðə ðæt ˈe.riə wəz mʌtʃ neər fər hər ænd mɔːr tə hər ˈlaɪ.kɪŋ. ɪ.ˈven so, ɒn hə fərst 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 ˈwɪ.men wɪθ ə ɡuːs ˈweɪ.tɪŋ fərr. ðə ˈwɪ.men ɡeɪv ˈsa.ra æn o.ˈfɪʃ.ɪəl ˈle.tə frɒm ðə ve:t. ðə ˈlæ.tər ɪm.ˈplaɪd ðæt ðə ˈenɪ.mᵊl kʊd bi ˈsʌf.ə.rɪŋ frəm ə reə ˈfɒ:rm əf fut æn maʊθ dɪ.ˈziːz, witʃ wəz sə.ˈpraɪz.ɪŋ, bɪˈkɒz ˈnɔː.mə.li jɪu wʊd nɒt- jɪu wʊd ˈo:n.li ɪk.ˈspekt tə siː ɪt ɪn ə dɒɡ ɔːr ə ɡo:t. ˈsæ.ra wəzˌsæn.tɪ.ˈmen.tᵊl, so ðɪs ˈmeɪd hər fiːl ˈsɒr.i fə ðə ˈbɪuː.tɪ.fʊl bərd. bɪ.ˈfɔ lɔŋ, ðæt ˈi:.tʃi ɡuːs bɪ.ˈɡæn tʊ strʌnt – bɪ.’gɪn tʊ  strʌt ə.ˈraʊnd ðə ˈɒf.ɪs laɪk ə ˈluː.nə.tɪk, whɪtʃ meɪd ən ʌn.ˈsæn.ɪ.tər.i mes. ðə ɡuːs ˈoʊ.nər, ˈmær.i ˈhær.ɪ.sən, kæpt ˈkɔːl.ɪŋ, ˈkɔ.mə, ˈkɔ.mə, whɪtʃ ˈsa.ra θɔːt wəz æn ɒd tʃɒɪs fər ə ne:m. ˈkɔ.ma wəz ə strɒŋ ænd hɪuːdʒ, ˈso ɪt wʊd te:k sʌm fɔːs tə træp hər, bʌt ˈsæ.ra hæd ə ˈdɪ.frənt ˈaɪ.ˈdɪə. fərst ʃi traɪd ˈdʒæent.li ˈstro.kɪŋ ðə ɡuːs ˈlo.ər bæk wɪθ hər pʌm, ðen ˈsɪŋ.ɪŋ ə tɪun tə hər. ˈfaɪ.nəl.i, ʃi əd.ˈmɪ- əd.ˈmɪ.nɪs.tərd ˈiː.ðə. hər ˈe.fo:rts wər nɒt ˈfɪu.taɪl. ɪn no taɪm, ðə ɡuːs bɪ.ˈɡe:n tə taɪ – ‘tai.ə, so ˈse.rə wəz ˈæ.bᵊl tə ho:ld ˈɒn.tʊ ˈkɔ.mə æn ɡɪv hər ə rɪ.ˈlæks.ɪŋ bɑθ.

wʌns ˈsar.ə hæd mæ.’nedʒd tʊ bɑθ ðə ɡuːs, ʃi waɪpt hər ɒf wɪθ ə klɔ:θ ænd leɪd hər ɒn hə raɪt saɪd. ðen ˈsa.rə kən.ˈfərmd ðə væts daɪəɡ.ˈno.sɪs. ˈɒl.most ɪ.ˈmiː.dɪet.li, ʃi rɪ.ˈmem.bərd æn ɪ.ˈfek.tɪv ˈtriːt.men ðæt rɪ.ˈkwerd hər tʊ ˈme.zə aʊt ə lɒt əf ˈmed. ɪ.sɪn. ˈsa.rə wərnd ðæt ðɪs kɔːs ɒf ˈtriːt.men maɪt bi ek.ˈspan.sɪv ˈi:.ðə faɪv ɔːr sɪks ˈtaɪmz ðə kɔ:st ɒf ˌˈpen.ɪ. sɪ.lɪn. aɪ kɑːnt ɪ.ˈma:.dʒin ˈpeɪ.ɪŋ so ˈmʌtʃ, bʌt ˈmɪ.sɪs. ˈhær.ɪ.sən ə ˌmɪ.lɪo.ˈneə ˈlɒ.jɪə ˈθɔːt ɪt wəz ə feə praɪs fɒr e kɪo.

TRANSCRIBED BY: Amin Rahman

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

ORTHOGRAPHIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH:

I am a teacher. My birthplace is Sylhet, Bangladesh. I completed my graduation and post-graduation from MC College in Sociology. My father is 76 years old. He is a former AGM from Jonata Bank. My mother was a housewife, and she is passed away five years ago. We are five sisters and brothers. All of them are married, and they have kids. Uh, they are successful on their own.

I am enjoyed myself the way I am living now. I can speak proper Bangla, though I am is Sylheti. I can speak a little, uh, Hindi. Uh, I can speak Hindi a little bit. I can speak Korean only a little. I’m learning languages for my own interest. I can sing. I can cook so many dishes. All of them are, uh, Bangladeshi dishes. Uh, for me, every single day is special and important.

I have been teaching for seven years. I’m still learning and learning from my students, from my colleagues. Uh, their love and respect make me realize to do something better. Whatever I want to do, my family members support me a lot. Without their support, I cant do anything.

I’m living with my father, my brother, sister-in-law, and their baby. I’m a single person. I want to be a good teacher, and I’m working on it. Definitely want to be a good, good teacher, good linguist. But that is not that much easier to me. Uh, that is my pleasure to have you as my mentor. Uh, hope I’m learning, uh, new things from you. Uh, thank you.

[The subject speaks Bangali]: Ami sylheter meye. Uh, Amar basharr kachhei achhey Keane Bridge, ebong amar beshi durey noi kachhey achhey Surma nodi. Ebong Sylheter abhawar kawtha jodi boli – awshadharon – ekhaney shawb shomoyi brishti, rodh, uh, achhey, ebong amra upobhog kori. Sheeter–- sheeter shomoy tao amra upobhog kori. Aj ei projontoi. Bhalo thakben.

[English translation: I am a girl from Sylhet. The Keane Bridge is near my house. And not far, quite near is the Surma River. And if I talk about Sylheti weather – it is unusually wonderful – here there is always rain and sunshine, which we enjoy. We enjoy the winter also. Let me end here today. Stay well].

[The subject speaks Sylheti]: Amar jonmo o boro oua syloto. Amar lekha fora o syloto. Ami syloti mat ami bashat mati, nijor manush er loge. Bai re ami syloti mati na, Jodi dorker oy tai le mati. Itar ma ne i nay je ami syloti mat bala fai na. Ami sylot ar tar mat reo bala fai.

[English translation: I was born and raised in Sylhet. I studied at Sylhet as well. I am speaking Syleheti at home with my family members/relatives. Outside, I didn’t speak in Syleheti, unless it is needed. It doesn’t mean that I don’t love Syleheti language. I love Sylehet, and love its language as well.]

TRANSCRIBED BY: Amin Rahman and subject

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

PHONETIC TRANSCRIPTION OF UNSCRIPTED SPEECH: N/A

TRANSCRIBED BY: N/A

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

SCHOLARLY COMMENTARY:

As she says in her unscripted speech, she is still trying to learn the correct pronunciations in English. She has overcome one major pronunciation problem of Sylhetis by learning to make the English /v/ sound, which is not present in the Sylheti language and is replaced by the /b/ sound. She has yet to learn the English consonant sound /ʒ/. Like most people in Bangladesh, she uses the /z/ sound instead.

Sylhetis have problems with vowel sound pairs such as /e/ and /æ/, and o and u, which they interchange. She needs to work on these vowel sounds. Otherwise, her English speech is quite intelligible.

COMMENTARY BY: Amin Rahman

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

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