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American Speech Habits

From:Emily Zilch <emily0@...>
Date:Tuesday, June 8, 2004, 4:32
{ 20040607,1955 Sally Caves }

"LOL!  I've been thinking about all the swallowed syllables in the
English I speak."

no kidding. one of the most unremarked of American speech habits is our
propensity to ROLL (as in X-SAMPA [r]) intervocalic letters, partic'ly
'fore [-er]: "better" is, in my idiolect at least, either [bE.rr\] or
[bE.r'r\] or a third version with [r] itself as the vocalic element
([bE.rr]). It's difficult to find examples sometimes, but another one
happens to occur at the beginning of this paragraph: [kIr'IN] or

i conlanged a bit on another list ages ago (for the Blue Planet RPG)
about the future of English. One of the changes was a (multistage)
modification of the stop system from [+/- voice] > [+/- aspirate], with
the first step already heavily underway: the loss of distinction in
voicing in intervocalic and coda position, most commonly seen in my
complete inability to distinguish -t-/-d- ("kiddy" & "kitty" are
identical, Sid-y ["like Sid"] and city, etc.). (Later interference from
Asian speakers plus a natural change in the language made initials be
identified by aspiration.)




Nik Taylor <yonjuuni@...>