Sociophonetic variation of like in British dialects:Effects of function, context and predictability

Schleef, Erik and Turton, Danielle (2018) Sociophonetic variation of like in British dialects:Effects of function, context and predictability. English Language and Linguistics, 22 (1). pp. 35-75. ISSN 1360-6743

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This study examines sociophonetic variation in different functions of like among adolescents in London and Edinburgh. It attempts to determine the factors that may explain this variation. Our results suggest that the function of like correlates primarily with contextual factors, rather than the phonetic factors of vowel quality, /l/ to vowel duration and /k/ realisation. In particular, the preceding and following segments and their bigram predictability emerge as highly significant, in addition to the boundary strength following like. In both London and Edinburgh, the vowel appears to be the only non-contextual feature that is sensitive to the function of like: quotative be like is more likely to be monophthongised than other functions of like. We argue that the more monophthongal nature of quotative like is due to the syntactic and prosodic context in which it occurs.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
English Language and Linguistics
Additional Information: The final, definitive version of this article has been published in the Journal, English Language and Linguistics, 22 (1), pp 35-75 2018, © 2016 Cambridge University Press.
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23 Sep 2019 12:40
Last Modified:
16 Sep 2023 02:01