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Title: Aspects of the phonology of English loanwords in Jordanian urban Arabic : a distinctive feature, moraic, and metrical stress analysis
Author: Sa'aida, Zainab Ahmad Mahmoud
ISNI:       0000 0004 5918 1192
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2015
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The aim of this study is to explore which Jordanian-Urban-Arabic-speakers use English loanwords more and how those loanwords get adapted. Two research questions were addressed in the study: Firstly, what phonological repair strategies do English loanwords undergo in the speech of Jordanian-Urban-Arabic-speaking female university students? Secondly, is there an association between frequent use of English and the use of English loanwords and phonological repair strategies in the speech of the respondents? A verbal questionnaire was used to collect the data from two groups of respondents; respondents who specialize in English and those who do not. The data consist of transcripts of audio-recordings of 60 respondents. The data were analysed in the framework of three theories: Odden’s (2005) presentation of Distinctive Feature Theory, Hayes’ (1989) Moraic Theory, and Hayes’ (1995) Metrical Stress Theory. The first theory dealt with segmental issues in the data, the second theory helped analyse the moraic structures of the data, and the third helped capture the metrical structures of the data and lexical stress shift. The findings show that the fashion in which the phonological repair strategies of syncope, epenthesis, glottal stop [ʔ] prosthesis, closed syllable shortening, de-clustering, vowel lengthening, vowel shortening, gemination, and word primary stress shift occur in loanwords has been clearly defined in the Phonological Repair Principle (PRP). According to the PRP, which has been proposed in the present study, repairs occur at the segmental level, which is defined by the Prosodic Hierarchy (PH) as the lowest phonological level, in favour of satisfying phonological constraints at higher phonological levels in the PH. It has been found that frequent use of English and the use of both loanwords and the strategies of consonantal substitution and epenthesis are correlated. There is a clear difference in the percentages of the pronunciations of the loanwords and the use of the strategies in the speech of the two groups; the respondents who specialise in English are more likely to use the loanwords and to maintain English phonemes and final clusters in the loanwords than the respondents who do not. According to the Substitution Optimality Principle (SOP), which has been proposed in the study, the strategy of consonantal substitution applies in a predictable fashion: a consonantal phoneme constitutes an optimal substitute if it shares more phonological features with the foreign one than does any other consonantal phoneme; redundant phonological features do not count. In this way, the optimal substitute for the foreign consonantal phoneme has been clearly defined. The study has drawn on a number of distinctive-feature-based rules, and moraic and metrical rules, which are related to the strategies that the loanwords undergo. The findings of the present study have been discussed in relation to other previous work on loanword phonology, and evaluation of the present study and previous research literature has been provided. The findings have added to the literature of loanword phonology and helped fill gaps. Recommendations for further studies have been suggested.
Supervisor: Heselwood, Barry ; Dickins, James Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available