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“Aspects of Pronunciation in Five Varieties of English”

Travers, Rebecca Jayne, Languages & Linguistics, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, UNSW

2010

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  • Title:
    “Aspects of Pronunciation in Five Varieties of English”
  • Author/Creator/Curator: Travers, Rebecca Jayne, Languages & Linguistics, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, UNSW
  • Subjects: Accents; Linguistics; Phonology
  • Resource type: Thesis
  • Type of thesis: Masters
  • Date: 2010
  • Supervisor: Amberber, Mengistu, Languages & Linguistics, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, UNSW; Collins, Peter, Languages & Linguistics, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, UNSW; Aarons, Debra, Languages & Linguistics, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, UNSW
  • Language: English
  • Print availability: T/2010/187 (Please speak to a staff member at the Library Help Zone)
  • Permissions: This work can be used in accordance with the Creative Commons BY-NC-ND license.
    Please see additional information at https://library.unsw.edu.au/copyright/for-researchers-and-creators/unsworks

  • Description: The English language is one of the most widely spoken languages in theworld, being spoken by approximately seven-hundred and fifty millionpeople, with around three-hundred and twenty-nine million of thosespeaking it as their first language, (Crystal, 2003:109). With this in mind, itis possible to understand why various scholars would suggest that thedissemination of the language may be having an adverse effect upon English.As a result, it seems essential to document this ever-changing language andexplore both its current state alongside its potential future developments.The focus of this research is to explore the differences in pronunciationbetween five major varieties of English; British, American, Australian, NewZealand and South African. Through an examination of the salientphonological differences between these World Englishes provided by primaryresearch and a review of relevant literature, the research consequently aimsto make predictions about significant future developments of the language.The research specifically focussed on the differences in aspects ofpronunciation between the five varieties; namely elements such as vowelproduction, /h/-dropping, glottalisation, the /hw/-/w/ distinction, as wellas suprasegmental features such as word stress. The analysis of primaryresearch and relevant literature has explored the three main hypothesesassociated with the future development of the World Englishes examinedand has postulated predictions. The findings of this research demonstratesminimal support for each of the hypotheses, however does not presentenough definitive evidence to provide a firm hypothesis regarding the futuredevelopment of the English Language, suggesting more long-term research isneeded in this area.

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