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A multivariate spatial analysis of vowel formants in American English

  • Jack Grieve (a1), Dirk Speelman (a2) and Dirk Geeraerts (a2)
Abstract

This paper presents the results of a multivariate spatial analysis of thirty-eight vowel formant variables measured in 236 cities from across the contiguous United States, based on the acoustic data from the Atlas of North American English. The results of the analysis both confirm and challenge the results of the Atlas. Most notably, while the analysis identifies similar patterns as the Atlas in the West and the Southeast, the analysis finds that the Midwest and the Northeast are distinct dialect regions that are considerably stronger than the traditional Midland dialect region identified in the Atlas. The analysis also finds evidence that a vowel shift is actively shaping the language of the Western United States.

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Corresponding author
*Address for correspondence: Jack Grieve, Lecturer in Forensic Linguistics, Centre for Forensic Linguistics, School of Languages and Social Sciences, Aston University, Aston Triangle B4 7ET, Birmingham, UK. Email j.grieve1@aston.ac.uk
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This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

Carmen Fought . 1999. A majority sound change in a minority community: /u/-fronting in Chicano English. Journal of Sociolinguistics 3: 523.

Valerie Fridland . 2008. Patterns of /uw/, /upsilon/, and /ow/ fronting in Reno, Nevada. American Speech 83: 432454.

Hans Goebl . 2006. Recent advances is Salzburg dialectometry. Literary and Linguistic Computing 21: 411435.

Jack Grieve . 2011. A regional analysis of contraction rate in written standard American English. International Journal of Corpus Linguistics 16: 514546.

Jack Grieve . 2012. A statistical analysis of regional variation in adverb position in a corpus of written standard American English. Corpus Linguistics and Linguistic Theory 8: 3972.

Leanne Hinton , Birch Moonwomon , Sue Bremner , Herb Luthin , Mary Van Clay , Jean Lerner & Hazel Corcoran . 1987. It's not just valley girls: A study of California English. In J. Aske, N. Beery, L. Michaelis & H. Filip (eds), Thirteenth Annual Meeting of the Berkeley Linguistics Society, 117127. Berkeley, CA: Berkeley Linguistics Society.

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J. K. Ord & Arthur Getis . 1995. Local spatial autocorrelation statistics: Distributional issues and an application. Geographical Analysis 27: 286306.

Joe H. Ward Jr. 1963. Hierarchical grouping to optimize an objective function. Journal of the American Statistical Association 58: 236244.

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Journal of Linguistic Geography
  • ISSN: -
  • EISSN: 2049-7547
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-linguistic-geography
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