The diffusion of /l/-vocalization in Swiss German

Leemann, Adrian and Kolly, Marie-José and Werlen, Iwar and Britain, David and Studer-Joho, Dieter (2014) The diffusion of /l/-vocalization in Swiss German. Language Variation and Change, 26 (2). pp. 191-218. ISSN 0954-3945

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Several western Swiss German dialects roughly grouped around the nation's capital Bern show /l/ > [u] vocalization in various contexts. The spatial boundaries of /l/-vocalization in Swiss German are suspected to have been expanding since being described in the Linguistic Atlas of German-Speaking Switzerland in the middle of the 20th century. The present study assesses the overall expansion of /l/-vocalization by means of a rapid anonymous survey in 20 urban regional centers situated just beyond the traditional boundaries of /l/-vocalization highlighted by the Atlas. Results show that the expansion of /l/-vocalization mainly progresses in southeasterly, southerly, and westerly directions, but with much less success to the north and northwest, where the equally influential dialectal areas of Basel and Zürich seem to exert opposing influences. Further analysis of the data indicates that somewhat differing constraint hierarchies are at work in the different places to which vocalization has diffused.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Language Variation and Change
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? educationlinguistics and languagelanguage and linguistics ??
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Deposited On:
10 Jan 2017 15:20
Last Modified:
15 Jul 2024 16:43