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Indianization of English

In: English and Literature

Submitted By nikita23089
Words 6057
Pages 25
3. DISTINGUISHING CHARACTERISTICS OF INDIAN ENGLISH
Indian English is a distinct variety of the English language. Many Indians claim that it is very similar to British English, but this opinion is based on a surface level examination of lexical similarities. Of course, one must keep in mind that not every linguistic item is used by every Indian English speaker and that a great deal of regional and educational differentiation exists. Even so, items can be identified which are indicative of Indian English speech and which are widely used. These operate on various phonological, morphological, lexical, and syntactic levels, which I will characterized with items brought up in the recorded discussions, in my previous experience with Indian English, and in scholarly writings about Indian English. References to the transcription excerpts (pages 17-26 of this report) are written, for example, as 1.3.4, which indicates Discussion 1, Excerpt 3, Item 4.
4. PHONOLOGY
I was able to do very little on the phonological level. I set up a test to see if the English alveolar /t/ would be articulated as the Indian retroflex /t/ or as the dental /t/ in different phonological environments. The result was that the retroflex completely replaced the alveolar; in fact, it has been found that the entire series of English alveolar consonants tends to be replaced by retroflex consonants (Trudgill & Hannah 1994, p.128). One item that did come out of the experiment was that some Indian English speakers had a tendency to drop the -ed ending after /k/ and /t/ (ex: walked became walk) (1.6.5). Some interesting things seemed to be happening with the articulation of /ð/ (as in then), which normally is pronounced as an interdental /d/, but which sometimes seemed to become alveolar. Also, listening to the taped discussions revealed that sometimes a was used in front of vowel-initial words (1.4.2)...

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