t/d deletion

Tom Zurinskas truespel at HOTMAIL.COM
Sat Sep 6 15:30:45 UTC 2008

I asked a leading linquist who is doing the phonetics for a new dictionary about the everpresent deletion of final "t" into a glottal stop.  For instance the sentence, "Is that what you want?", is most likely pronounced with the final t's glottalized (Is tha' wha' you wan'?).  I asked if he were going to recognize this fact in his guide, possibly as an alternative pronunciation, because it is a reality.  He said no.  The reason he gave was "People won't like it."
This also applied to swapping "d" for "t" in words like "butter" and "city".

So how real are the pronunciations guides in our dictionaries when they don't reflect these real situations which are in the majority, not minority.  In my pronunciation guide for the VOA beginners dictionary I at least added these as alternative pronunciations.

Tom Zurinskas, USA - CT20, TN3, NJ33, FL5+
See truespel.com - and the 4 truespel books plus "Occasional Poems" at authorhouse.com.

> Date: Sat, 6 Sep 2008 06:43:12 -0700
> From: zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU
> Subject: t/d deletion
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender: American Dialect Society
> Poster: "Arnold M. Zwicky"
> Subject: t/d deletion
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> from a thesis draft by Laura Staum Casasanto, Experimental
> Investigations of Sociolinguistic Knowledge:
> The variable this dissertation will focus on is called t/d deletion, a
> specific case of
> consonant cluster reduction; it is a phonetic variable in English in
> which final coronal
> stops in consonant clusters may be deleted in some environments. Final
> t/d deletion is
> defined as the absence of a pronounced oral stop segment corresponding
> to a final t or d
> in words (Gregory et al. 1999).
> ... This variable makes a good test case for the current hypothesis
> because “…over the
> past thirty-five years, this phenomenon has been studied in more
> detail than probably any
> other variable phonological phenomenon,” (Coetzee, 2004).
> quotation from (Patrick, 2006):
> The study of (TD) has been the vehicle for several significant
> advances in variationist practice and theory: it has set standards for
> quantitative description (Labov et al 1968; Guy 1980), initiated
> quantitative cross-dialectal studies (Labov 1975), expanded the use of
> statistical methods within the discipline (Neu 1980), illuminated the
> acquisition of variable constraints by children (Labov 1989, Roberts
> 1995) and adults (Bayley 1991), and their continuing development among
> adult native speakers (Guy & Boyd 1990), identified contrasts and
> similarities between English and related Creole languages (Patrick
> 1992, 1999), and grounded explanations for variable processes in
> formal linguistic theory (Guy 1991, Reynolds 1994, Santa Ana 1996, Guy
> & Boberg 1997; but see Hudson 1997 for some interesting arguments).
> For these reasons, (TD) is a “showcase variable” (Patrick 1999), and
> its study has been crucial to our knowledge of language variation and
> change. - (Patrick, 2006)
> Staum Casasanto supplies still more bibliography on (TD).
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

Want to do more with Windows Live? Learn “10 hidden secrets” from Jamie.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list