A preliminary acoustic phonetic examination of Lebanese Australian English

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Abstract

Lebanese Australian English (LAusE) is a relatively recent addition to the dialects of English available to people who are born and raised in Australia. It has been created to fulfil the social needs of a particular minority group and is not foreign accented English. It operates in conjunction with Standard Australian English (SAusE) in the community and appears to comprise a continuum from highly vernacular forms through to SAusE. This paper reports on a preliminary study of some acoustic phonetic characteristics in the speech of five young adult male university students who were born in Australia to Lebanese parents. All speakers have English as their first language. The speakers were recorded using standard word list and sentence tasks. In this initial analysis, the acoustic characteristics of vowels and coda consonants are examined. Results of comparisons with SAusE suggest vowel gesture differences and consonantal timing effects. The results also lend support to the idea of a continuum of variation from the standard Australian English form through to more highly vernacular LAusE. The paper also poses the question of how this new dialect may be represented in our conceptualisation of Australian English varieties.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-5
Number of pages1
JournalAustralian Journal of Psychology
Volume58
Publication statusPublished - 2006

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