/Z/ and /dZ/

Herbert Stahlke hstahlke at WORLDNET.ATT.NET
Sat Mar 22 02:20:56 UTC 2003

It's pretty widely known that some English speakers have /Z/ only
intervocalically and /dZ/ finally, initial /Z/ being educated usage and
rare.  Last week I graded a phonetics project involving vowel tensing before
alveo-palatals, and from the tapes and the demographic information the
students had recorded it was the /Z/ vs. /dZ/ choice in final position was a
class marker.  All of the speakers who had no final /Z/ were working class.

This was a small sample, about 35 speakers in all, and nearly all drawn from
the Muncie area, so I wouldn't want to generalize to readily, but does this
choice serve as a class marker in other parts of the country too?


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