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Title: Manx English : a phonological investigation into levelling and diffusion from across the water
Author: Booth, Andrew
Awarding Body: University of Westminster
Current Institution: University of Westminster
Date of Award: 2020
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This study aims to locate the Isle of Man within the sociolinguistic field of language variation and change. Stigmatised features of speech on island communities are often cited as examples to discuss accent levelling (the loss of traditional features), in addition, the research into geographical diffusion (the inclusion of features from outside) on islands demonstrates the extent of spread that certain features reach. However, there are also certain resistance strategies and barriers islanders can put up. The English spoken on the Isle of Man (referred to as Manx English) has had little coverage within the investigation of linguistic issues. Both apparent- and real-time analysis methods are presented within this thesis. Previous phonological analysis from two separate studies (SED in 1950s/1960s and Recording Mann in 1999) were used to compare to the original corpus created for this thesis. Different generations of families were also analysed for synchronic changes in dialect features. Recordings were obtained through sociolinguistic interviews and were analysed auditorily and acoustically. The overarching aims of the research are to assess the influence of accent features from outside the community,investigate features, which may have been lost over time, and to discuss the social and linguistic factors, which determine the acceptance or resistance of some features. Findings vary from feature to feature. This thesis discovered that there are elements of traditional Manx English that are upheld (vowel lenghtening). The GOAT vowel is showing interesting variation from young to old speakers depending on influences (Liverpool for younger speakers,traditional Manx English forms for older) and the incoming tide of the glottal stop is reaching the Island’s shores. This thesis investigates the mechanisms of change and finds both internal and external factors affect the production of English on the Isle of Man.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available