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LIN228H1 (26)
A.Kochetov (15)


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LIN228H1F 2012 – Week 3 Kochetov-1 English Vowels (General American/Canadian) Vowel phonemes Vowels are described in terms of height, backness, and rounding.  height: high, mid, or low  backness: front, central, or back  rounding: rounded or unrounded (all of the non-low back vowels are rounded in English) Diphthongs consist of a sequence of a simple vowel and a glide. Simowlels: Diphthongs: front central back front central back i [ɨ] u high ʊ ɪ je ow mid ɛ ǝ [ɚ] ɔj ʌ [ɔ] [ʌj] [ʌw] low æ aj aw ɑ [ɒ] i beat [ buit] boot [ but] ɪ bit [bɪt] ʊ book [bʊk] ej bait [ bejt] ow boat [bowt] ɛ bet [bɛt] ǝ sofa [ sowfǝ] ɔj boy [bɔj] ʌ fun [ fʌn] æ bat [bæt] aj hide [ hajd] ɑ father [fɑðǝɹ] aw loud [lawd] Tense vs. lax: Vowels in English are also distinguished according to whether they are tense or lax. The terms tense and lax do not refer to a consistent phonetic property but rather are used to label sets of vowels that behave differently with respect to the phonology of English.  Tense vowels: i, ej, aj, aw, u, ow, ɑ, ɔj  Lax vowels: ɪ, ɛ, æ, ʌ, ʊ, ǝ LIN228H1F 2012 – Week 3 Kochetov-2 Phonotactic restrictions:  Tense vowels can occur in open (ending in __________________ ) or closed syllables (ending in ____________________).  Lax vowels can only occur in closed syllables.  Schwa is exceptional in this respect. It is a lax vowel which can occur in open syllables. Mid central vowels:  Schwa, [ǝ], is a mid, central, unrounded vowel that occurs in unstressed syllables.  Other vowels are often reduced to schwa in unstressed positions.  Caret, [ʌ], is also a mid, central, unrounded vowel and the two vowels sound very similar.  We will use [ʌ] to transcribe a mid, central vowel that occurs in stressed position and [ǝ] to transcribe a mid, central vowel in unstressed position. Vowels before /ɹ/:  Only some vowels may occur before /ɹ/.  Before syllable-final /ɹ/ there is no contrast between tense and lax vowels that have the same specifications for height and backness (i/ɪ and u/ʊ). The actual vowel quality found in words like beer and poor is somewhere between the two.  The monophthong [ɔ] in Canadian English is limited to the context before /ɹ/, as in court [kɔɹt]. It can be considered an allophone of the diphthong /ow/. Vowels before /l/:  Before /l/, the low back vowel /ɑ/ is usually rounded, [ɒ], as inoll [dɒl]. Allophonic variation in vowels Length:  Tense vowels and diphthongs are always longer than lax vowels. o For simple vowels this inherent length can is indicated with a raised dot in narrow transcription (e.g. [uˑ]). o For diphthongs inherent length is not shown using a raised dot but is conveyed by the use of two characters in the representation of the diphthong (e.g. [ow]).  All vowels are lengthened when they occur before a voiced consonant or syllable finally. This is known as contextual length because it is dependent upon the phonetic environment in which the vowels occur. This is also shown with a raised dot.  If a vowel already has inherent length and is in a position where it is contextually lengthened this additional length is shown with two dots (a colon). When diphthongs receive contextual length this is shown with a raised dot following the vowel portion of the diphthong. LIN228H1F 2012 – Week 3 Kochetov-3 before a voiceless before a voiced consonant syllable fin
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