2004
Volume 26, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 1384-5845
  • E-ISSN: 2352-1171

Abstract

Abstract

In Moroccan Dutch, /s/ has been claimed to be pronounced as retracted [s] (towards /ʃ/) in certain consonant clusters. Recently, retracted s-pronunciation has also been attested in endogenous Dutch. We tested empirically whether Moroccan Dutch [s] is indeed more retracted than endogenous Dutch [s] in relevant clusters. Additionally, we tested whether the inter-speaker variation of /s/ is smaller between Moroccan Dutch speakers than between endogenous Dutch speakers, as expected if retraction of /s/ would be used as identity marker in in-group conversations in Moroccan Dutch. The [s] realizations of 21 young, male Moroccan Dutch and 21 endogenous Dutch speakers were analyzed. Analyses of the spectral centre of gravity (CoG) show that both groups of speakers had more retracted pronunciations of [s] in typically retracting contexts than in typically non-retracting contexts. However, Moroccan Dutch speakers had higher CoG in both contexts than endogenous Dutch speakers, refuting the stronger retraction expected in Moroccan Dutch speakers. The inter-speaker variation was larger between Moroccan Dutch speakers than between endogenous-Dutch speakers, refuting the expected usage of /s/ retraction as a group identity marker.

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