fronted /oU/

Tim Frazer tcf at MACOMB.COM
Fri Nov 3 22:21:26 UTC 2000

Beverly's observation that fronting has been around a long time in her South
Midland area is interesting, because around where I live, which has a
somewhat similar English-speaking settlement history (albeit one that starts
about a generation later than in SE Ohio, c. 1830 vs. 1800 + or -)
/oU/ fronting, while common among rural speakers, seems to have begun only
in those born after WWII.  (BTW, these communities are located in W. ILL
about 100 mi. due N of ST. Louis, about halfway between Peoria and
Burlington, IA.)
Case I:  Women from one family in LaHarpe, IL: (Name, DOB, %ow fronting on
Olive 1898 0
Anne 1908  0
Maryanne 1933 0
Diane        1951 56%  (n/n=5/9)
Kate          1956  56%  5/9
Interviewed 1978-80

Case 2: Women from one family, Industry, IL
Nancy 1900 17% (2/12)
Donne  1935   0% (0/7)
Melinda 1961  75% (6/8)

Case 3:  Students at Industry High School, interviewed 1993
Brandy, 1978, 13%
Colleen, 1979, 67%
Cassie,   1980, 33%
Kelly       1980 66%
Carrie     1981  16%   (These students were all reading a set passage while
their English teacher watched.  The families above (case 1 and 2) were free
conversations recorded by a family member)

Attached are ow fronting scores recorded by HS and college students around
LaHarpe IL in the mid 90s.  These were taped by students in my linguistics
classes, usually peers.


----- Original Message -----
From: Beverly Flanigan <flanigan at OAK.CATS.OHIOU.EDU>
Sent: Friday, November 03, 2000 10:53 AM
Subject: Re: fronted /oU/

> It's also in southern and southeastern Ohio, where I hear it mainly in
> and older people, so it's been around a long time in the South
> Midland.  It's not the same as Valley Girl fronting, at least not that of
> my southern Cal VG grad student, nor is it quite the same as in RP, but
> it's close.  I forget who plays Ainsley; could she be doing a poor
> imitation of NC and/or private school vowels?
> At 07:10 AM 11/3/00 -0500, you wrote:
> >I've heard that fronted /oU/ sound in several dialects. It's the sound
> >used in standard British speech. In America, I've heard it in southern
> >New Jersey, Philadelphia and Baltimore. I've also heard it in West
> >Virginia, from a 30-year-old or so contestant on "Who Wants to Be a
> >Millionaire." His parents, though, used the General American /oU/. DARE
> >says that it's a Philadelphia/Baltimore/Pittsburgh/eastern North Carolina
> >feature that has been spreading; maybe it has been spreading in West
> >Virginia. Ainsley is supposed to be from North Carolina; she could be
> >from the eastern part of the state. A friend of mine from Kansas City
> >says she's never used the sound or heard it in Kansas City; I guess it's
> >not heard in that part of Missouri.
> _____________________________________________
> Beverly Olson Flanigan         Department of Linguistics
> Ohio University                     Athens, OH  45701
> Ph.: (740) 593-4568              Fax: (740) 593-2967
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: Awchart.wpd
Type: application/octet-stream
Size: 11958 bytes
Desc: not available
URL: <>

More information about the Ads-l mailing list