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Re: Retroflex vowels?

From:Roger Mills <romilly@...>
Date:Saturday, January 26, 2002, 22:49
Clint Jackson Baker wrote:

>In my idiolect (thanks to whoever >used that word in a post yesterday!) I say the words >Paul, pole, and pull (esp the latter two) with what >seem to be only two phones. My tongue indeed seems to >be in a retroflex position; it's like I've assimilated >the [l] into the vowel. Would I be right in calling >this a retroflex vowel? How would I represent it in >SAMPA?
Interesting. Amer.Engl. /ow/ (as in pole) and /U/ (as in pull) are undergoing merger in some dialects-- but mainly before /r/; I think this started in NYC speech. Thus "sure" and "shore" are becoming homophones or nearly so. I hadn't heard of it before /l/, but it's not surprising since /r/ and /l/ are somewhat similar. I suspect it has more to do with the velarized /l/ than with retroflexion, though I could be wrong. You later wrote:
>Sitting here I realize that when I say those words the >tip of my tongue actually doubles back and touches my >tongue.
How's that again?? :-) Are you sure you didn't mean "...touches my palate"? (Or else you have an amazingly and super-humanly flexible tongue....)


Tristan Alexander McLeay <anstouh@...>