How your idiolect differs from the standard language

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Travis B.
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Post by Travis B. »

Or, to sum it up in far fewer words, preexisting words, especially grammar words, behave as if they have more degrees of freedom than new words. The former are best analyzed as having independent vowel quality, vowel length, vowel nasalization, following obstruent fortisness/lenisness, and pitch accentuation, and trying to force them into less degrees of freedom results in very contrived analyses. Yet, at the same time, the latter behave as if they have significantly fewer degrees of freedom, with vowel length being clearly directly tied to following obstruent fortisness/lenisness, vowel nasalization being clearly tied to following consonant nasality, and pitch accentuation clearly being tied to adjacent syllables where one of them has primary stress that can be merged through relatively fixed phonological pathways. In essence, there are two incompatible sets of rules at work that are very difficult to reconcile within a phonemic-type model.

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Post by finlay »

What? Again you're at it with the not making sense. It's not a major contrivance to say /t#d/, anyway.

(to the first post)

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Post by Travis B. »

finlay wrote:What? Again you're at it with the not making sense. It's not a major contrivance to say /t#d/, anyway.

(to the first post)
.
But that's the thing - my dialect's phonology is littered with cases like that amongst grammar words and especially contractions, to the point that the surface forms of many grammar words essentially need their own rules to explain them away for very small sets of cases, and yet many of these one-off rules of their own complications that would then need to be explained away in turn. For instance, explaining why gonna and wanna take short vowels in their first syllables, as [ˈɡ̊ʌ̃ɾ̃ʲə(ː)] and [ˈwɒ̃ɾ̃ʲə(ː)], rather than long ones, as *[ˈɡ̊ʌ̃ːnʲə(ː)] and *[ˈwɒ̃ːnʲə(ː)], when disyllabic and long diphthongs, as [ˈɡ̊ʌ̃̂ɐ̯̃] and [ˈwɒ̃̂ɐ̃], rather than overlong ones, as *[ˈɡ̊ʌ̃̂ːɐ̯̃] and *[ˈwɒ̃̂ːɐ̃], when monosyllabic, as one would expect were they underlyingly /ˈɡʌnu/ and /ˈwɒnu/, yet are never realized with [nʲtʲ], as *[ˈɡ̊ʌ̃nʲtʲə(ː)] and *[ˈwɒ̃nʲtʲə(ː)], in any register at all in my dialect, as would be expected if they were underlyingly /ˈɡʌntu/ and /ˈwɒntu/. Neither positing underlying /n/ nor positing underlying /nt/ works in a consistent way here within a phonemic model without vowel length decoupled from consonant quality. In a traditional analysis, one would have to special-case these two forms. And unfortunately, in the end one would end up with a lot of special cases that make no phonological sense in any kind of consistent way synchronically.

(In all honesty, appealing to morpheme boundaries to me is a phonological way of "pulling a rabbit out of a hat" for things like this; simply saying "there's a morpheme boundary there" is not a good answer to problems like these unless it is very clear that the morpheme boundary is, indeed, the reason for such.)

(Actually, there is another alternate solution to this problem within a traditional phonemic model - positing a new /ɾ̃/ phoneme separate from /nt/, which in most cases may alternate with /nt/ but in some grammar forms like these does not alternate with /nt/. But again, this is taking us into "create a rule for the individual case" territory.. and similarly requires explaining the particular cases where the two would not alternate, getting us back to where we started...)
Last edited by Travis B. on Mon Jun 07, 2010 5:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by dhok »

finlay wrote:Morphosyntactically, there are a couple of odd constructions that crop up in Scottish standard dialect that don't in others, such as "my clothes need washed" (std "my clothes need washing"), or "see X, ..." for irrealis constructions (I think that was the term), but they don't tend to crop up much. There are a couple of other odd ones which crop up occasionally. I often collapse the difference between past participle and past tense, so end up with "I've went" (although in this case "I've gone" is often realised as "I've been" – but that's fairly normal). I can't think of any more at the moment. I'm sure they'll come to me.



I know this is very late to quote this, but this is odd, because "X needs Y-ed" is also a standard feature in the Pittsburgh dialect of American English.

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Post by finlay »

Daquarious P. McFizzle wrote:
finlay wrote:Morphosyntactically, there are a couple of odd constructions that crop up in Scottish standard dialect that don't in others, such as "my clothes need washed" (std "my clothes need washing"), or "see X, ..." for irrealis constructions (I think that was the term), but they don't tend to crop up much. There are a couple of other odd ones which crop up occasionally. I often collapse the difference between past participle and past tense, so end up with "I've went" (although in this case "I've gone" is often realised as "I've been" – but that's fairly normal). I can't think of any more at the moment. I'm sure they'll come to me.



I know this is very late to quote this, but this is odd, because "X needs Y-ed" is also a standard feature in the Pittsburgh dialect of American English.

It was pointed out to me at a ZBB meet one time. They laughed at me. :(


As for Travis, I can't really be bothered right now man, sorry. But you've drawn my attention to the word 'want' – does anyone else say /wʌnt/? I get the impression this is uncommon compared to everyone else's /wɒnt/, and I couldn't seem to find anything saying that this is common/standard in Scotland or not.

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Post by TaylorS »

Daquarious P. McFizzle wrote:
I know this is very late to quote this, but this is odd, because "X needs Y-ed" is also a standard feature in the Pittsburgh dialect of American English.


That isn't a standard part of my dialect but it does seem to be creeping in here, probably because of influence from people moving here from the Rust Belt. I'll use it once in a while ("The oven needs fixed")



As for other grammatical dialect features around here, the ones I can think of for North Cental are:

1. "By" replacing "at" in many locative prepositional phrases. "I'm going by the store to grab a pop." This is almost for sure a German influence.

2. Positive "Anymore", though it's not as used here as it is in the Lower Midwest.

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Post by Dewrad »

TaylorS wrote:1. "By" replacing "at" in many locative prepositional phrases. "I'm going by the store to grab a pop." This is almost for sure a German influence.
In what dialect is "I'm going at the store to grab a pop" grammatical? And, for what it's worth, I wouldn't be so quick to ascribe that kind of construction to German influence. The use of "by" as a locative preposition is well embedded in a number of UK English dialects.
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Post by Travis B. »

TaylorS wrote:1. "By" replacing "at" in many locative prepositional phrases. "I'm going by the store to grab a pop." This is almost for sure a German influence.

My dialect does most definitely have this feature, I must say.

TaylorS wrote:2. Positive "Anymore", though it's not as used here as it is in the Lower Midwest.

On the other hand, it definitely lacks this one.

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Post by TaylorS »

Dewrad wrote:
TaylorS wrote:1. "By" replacing "at" in many locative prepositional phrases. "I'm going by the store to grab a pop." This is almost for sure a German influence.
In what dialect is "I'm going at the store to grab a pop" grammatical? And, for what it's worth, I wouldn't be so quick to ascribe that kind of construction to German influence. The use of "by" as a locative preposition is well embedded in a number of UK English dialects.
OOPS, I mean "at" AND "to". My bad! :oops:

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Post by Magb »

TaylorS wrote:
Dewrad wrote:
TaylorS wrote:1. "By" replacing "at" in many locative prepositional phrases. "I'm going by the store to grab a pop." This is almost for sure a German influence.
In what dialect is "I'm going at the store to grab a pop" grammatical? And, for what it's worth, I wouldn't be so quick to ascribe that kind of construction to German influence. The use of "by" as a locative preposition is well embedded in a number of UK English dialects.
OOPS, I mean "at" AND "to". My bad! :oops:

Isn't "going by the store" a rather standard pan-English way of expressing that the visit to the store will be brief and/or possibly on the way to somewhere else? Or does your usage of "going by the store" not have any of those connotations?

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Post by Travis B. »

Magb wrote:
TaylorS wrote:
Dewrad wrote:
TaylorS wrote:1. "By" replacing "at" in many locative prepositional phrases. "I'm going by the store to grab a pop." This is almost for sure a German influence.
In what dialect is "I'm going at the store to grab a pop" grammatical? And, for what it's worth, I wouldn't be so quick to ascribe that kind of construction to German influence. The use of "by" as a locative preposition is well embedded in a number of UK English dialects.
OOPS, I mean "at" AND "to". My bad! :oops:

Isn't "going by the store" a rather standard pan-English way of expressing that the visit to the store will be brief and/or possibly on the way to somewhere else? Or does your usage of "going by the store" not have any of those connotations?

I think TaylorS was more referring to not just constructions like that but also constructions like "I'm over by my grandma's house" meaning "I'm over at my grandma's house", mind you.

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Post by Magb »

Travis B. wrote:I think TaylorS was more referring to not just constructions like that but also constructions like "I'm over by my grandma's house" meaning "I'm over at my grandma's house", mind you.

Ok, yeah, that's a common (I doubt that it's limited to North Central American English) but definitely non-standard usage.

In that example, is the over obligatory? You can say "I'm at my grandma's house", but is "I'm by my grandma's house" grammatical with a purely locative rather than proximal (i.e. "next to") reading of by?

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Post by Travis B. »

Magb wrote:
Travis B. wrote:I think TaylorS was more referring to not just constructions like that but also constructions like "I'm over by my grandma's house" meaning "I'm over at my grandma's house", mind you.

Ok, yeah, that's a common (I doubt that it's limited to North Central American English) but definitely non-standard usage.

In that example, is the over obligatory? You can say "I'm at my grandma's house", but is "I'm by my grandma's house" grammatical with a purely locative rather than proximal (i.e. "next to") reading of by?

No, the over is not obligatory, even though in my dialect it does tend to be used a lot in such a fashion.

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Post by äreo »

Another question about prepositional constructions: does anyone else use different from, different than and different to depending on context? I tend to hear of people using just one, as a dialectal preference, but I've noticed a pattern to my usage:

"from" is for comparing nouns:
X is different from Y.
They speak differently from how we do.

"than" is used to compare clauses straight:
They speak differently than we do.

"to", as far as I can tell, is used for comparing perspectives:
That looks different to me (than it did/from how it did).
My prononciation of French is different to both Québec and European varieties.
[/i]

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Post by Yng »

Isn't that how they're meant to be used? 'Different from' modifies a noun, 'different than' a clause, etc?

That looks different to me (than it did/from how it did).
My prononciation of French is different to both Québec and European varieties.


Those are two different things, though. 'That looks different to me' = for me, that looks different. You wouldn't say 'that looks different from me'.

For me, 'different from' and 'different to' are in free variation modifying nouns. 'Different from how' or 'different from what' is how I would normally say your examples with 'than' - 'different from how they speak', 'different from what I remember'.

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Post by äreo »

I've heard people say, though, "X is different than Y", which sounds odd to me.

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Post by Alces »

Alces wrote:
AnTeallach wrote:How would you treat words like Sahara or aural in this analysis? [a] and [ɒ] can presumably appear in that environment, so there is a potential contrast (not that I can think of a minimal pair right now).

I do agree that a lot of people think of [ɑː] as somehow "having an r in it", e.g. they'll say that southerners pronounce "bath" as "barth", but I tend to think this is more to do with how the sound is usually spelt in non-rhotic Northern English than the actual phonology...


Although I guess there are people who would pronounce those words /səharə/ or /ɒrəl/, I'd always pronounce them /səhɑːrə/ and /ɔːrəl/.

It's true that the idea of [ɔː ɜː ɑː] being /ɒr ɛr ar/ is probably due to spelling, but the way I see it phonology is basically arbitrary when it comes to this sort of thing, and the analysis works in my idiolect.


Wait, I just realised I probably misunderstood you there. Yeah, you'd have to postulate /ɒrrəl/ for 'aural' and that sort of thing, which is rather unelegant, so the analysis is probably not a very good one in any case.

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Post by finlay »

YngNghymru wrote:Isn't that how they're meant to be used? 'Different from' modifies a noun, 'different than' a clause, etc?

Prescriptivists have been known to have battles over which is the more correct. Take note: even they can't decide. If your dialect forces a distinction, fine. But most people's don't, or force a different distinction. It all depends on which other similar phrase it's used with analogy to (I can't remember an example). I probably favour "different from" myself; "different than" sounds a bit odd to me at all. (There's also "different to")

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Post by finlay »

Alces wrote:[talking about 'aural']

Here's a question, and this one goes out to the general populace: do you make a distinction between 'oral' and 'aural'? They show up in conjunction in linguistics a lot. Let's assume that you don't force a distinction by pronouncing the second with a MOUTH vowel...


I'm just wondering if I'm the only one that goes /oral/ versus /Oral/ (ignoring the /ral/ bit obv.). FORCE-NORTH distinction perhaps....?

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Post by Travis B. »

finlay wrote:
Alces wrote:[talking about 'aural']

Here's a question, and this one goes out to the general populace: do you make a distinction between 'oral' and 'aural'? They show up in conjunction in linguistics a lot. Let's assume that you don't force a distinction by pronouncing the second with a MOUTH vowel...


I'm just wondering if I'm the only one that goes /oral/ versus /Oral/ (ignoring the /ral/ bit obv.). FORCE-NORTH distinction perhaps....?

No; oral and aural are homophones for me, as [ˈɔːʁˤɯ(ː)].

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Post by TaylorS »

Travis B. wrote:
TaylorS wrote:1. "By" replacing "at" in many locative prepositional phrases. "I'm going by the store to grab a pop." This is almost for sure a German influence.

My dialect does most definitely have this feature, I must say.

TaylorS wrote:2. Positive "Anymore", though it's not as used here as it is in the Lower Midwest.

On the other hand, it definitely lacks this one.

Like I said, Positive Anymore exists here, but is not as common as it is farther south. Here it's mostly used when the finite verb is fronted to the start of a sentence.
Last edited by TaylorS on Tue Jun 08, 2010 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by TaylorS »

Magb wrote:Isn't "going by the store" a rather standard pan-English way of expressing that the visit to the store will be brief and/or possibly on the way to somewhere else? Or does your usage of "going by the store" not have any of those connotations?
"Going by the store" and "Stopping by the store" have the same meaning here as "Going to the store" and "stopping at the store"

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Post by TaylorS »

Travis B. wrote:No; oral and aural are homophones for me, as [ˈɔːʁˤɯ(ː)].


I say /oːrəl/ [ɔːʁˤɰˡ] and /arəl/ [ɑʁˤɰˡ]

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Post by Travis B. »

TaylorS wrote:
Magb wrote:Isn't "going by the store" a rather standard pan-English way of expressing that the visit to the store will be brief and/or possibly on the way to somewhere else? Or does your usage of "going by the store" not have any of those connotations?
"Going by the store" and "Stopping by the store" have the same meaning here as "Going to the store" and "stopping at the store"

Same here, even though I would generally make going by be going over by in my own speech.

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Post by AnTeallach »

finlay wrote:
Alces wrote:[talking about 'aural']

Here's a question, and this one goes out to the general populace: do you make a distinction between 'oral' and 'aural'? They show up in conjunction in linguistics a lot. Let's assume that you don't force a distinction by pronouncing the second with a MOUTH vowel...

I'm just wondering if I'm the only one that goes /oral/ versus /Oral/ (ignoring the /ral/ bit obv.). FORCE-NORTH distinction perhaps....?


It's FORCE vs. NORTH for me too.

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