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Socio Linguistics Essay

842 words - 4 pages

The intention of this assignment was to analyze the raising of the /ae/ or /I/ before the ‘ing’ sound in a word. For example, ring turns into rang or think into thank. In this experiment two subjects were recorded in an interview and their speech was analyzed. The two subjects are approximately 40 years apart.
Subject one is Cody Hall, my boyfriend, Cody was born in Fresno, California and spent his early childhood in Alaska. At the age of 8 years Cody moved to Mariposa, California and graduated from Mariposa County High School. He is now attending California State University, Chico studying Applied Computer Graphics. Both his parents grew up in the East Coast. His mother is from Connecticut ...view middle of the document...

Thank you for Thinking of Me, Table: 1

raised /ae/
raised /I/
Subject one
thank /ae/
think /I/
Subject two
thank /ae/
think /I/

According to Table: 1 neither subject reflects the raised /ae/ or /I/ when they speak. Thank is still pronounced with an /ae/ and think is still pronounced with an /I/. I was not surprised Subject Two did not express these traits. Yet, Subject One did not either. This was surprising because in the interview, when listening to it in its entirety, I pronounce ‘thank’ and ‘think’ identically, replacing /I/ with an /ae/. One might recall that Subject One is my mother and I predicted that she would express these vocal traits.
The second table, Table: 2, states the words in which each subject expresses one of the raised vowels and the numbers express the severity in which each does so.

Interview Graph, Table: 2

raised /ae/
raised /I/
Subject one

Subject two

thank: 2

In the interview with Subject One, he does not pronounce the raised /ae/ or /I/. This was also surprising. I had expected Subject One to express traits of the Northern Cities Shift. When listening to a sampling of sounds recorded by Penny Eckert from Stanford University the word think is pronounced as if the /I/ was replaced with an ‘ee’ sound so that that word sounds like theenk (Eckert). However, Subject One does not do this. Instead, he pronounces think with an /I/ and thank with an /ae/.
In the interview,...

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