Teaching With a Kentucky Accent

Millie Webb millie-webb at CHARTER.NET
Mon Dec 9 20:16:46 UTC 2002

When I was looking at Michiganders supposedly backing [E] to "schwa", I had
to specifically shut out environments of [E] before nasals and before most
[l] (though this was lexical), or my data got all messed up.  Elsewhere, I
found that [E] tended to move towards [schwa - upside down 'e'], in words
like "bet", "eggs", and so on.  Also except before nasals, [I] tended to
shift down towards [E], as in W[E]sconsin, "mix", "ticket", and so on.
That's where Ellinois and Endiana come from, it seems.  My mother-in-law,
who was born, raised and had a family in Michigan, will insist she does NOT
say WEsconsin, but WEsconsin, and not mElk, but mElk.  I think she honestly
cannot hear the difference between [E] and [I] in many places.  -- Millie
----- Original Message -----
From: "Steve Kl." <stevekl at PANIX.COM>
Sent: Monday, December 09, 2002 2:04 PM
Subject: Re: Teaching With a Kentucky Accent

> On Mon, 9 Dec 2002, Millie Webb wrote:
> > dEnIs has pointed out before.  I find it very odd that a people who
> > pronounce "milk" as [mElk], Wisconsin as [wEsconsIn],
> For what it's worth, I still say ELL-i-noi and EN-dee-an-uh, too. Do
> people from Illinois say that, or is it just Michiganders?
> (Many of my Michigan features have fallen by the wayside after I moved
> out east, but this is not one of those. It'll always be mElk for me!

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