2004
Volume 70, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 0039-8691
  • E-ISSN: 2215-1214

Abstract

Abstract

How do young bilingual speakers of current Turkish and Moroccan ethnolects of Dutch deal with phoneme contrasts that do not exist in their heritage languages and that are at the same time subject to regional and social variation in the Dutch speech community at large, such as that between Dutch phonemes /a:/ and /α/? Data from speakers from the Amsterdam and Nijmegen urban areas were analyzed and compared. Two variable properties of /a:/ and /α/ defining the phoneme pair were examined: (1) duration, and (2) place of articulation.

We found clear differences between the two urban areas (regional effect) and between the Amsterdam ethnic groups (social effect). In addition, we found variation dependent on the interlocutor (socio-stylistic effect) and the linguistic context. The main dimension of social and linguistic variation was place of articulation, length remaining the primary distinctive feature of the vowel pair. No heritage language effect was found. Young ethnolect speakers take part in existing patterns of regional and social variation.

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