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A Sociolinguistic Investigation of Two Hōrāni Features in Sūf, Jordan

Al-Hawamdeh, Areej M M (2016) A Sociolinguistic Investigation of Two Hōrāni Features in Sūf, Jordan. PhD thesis, University of Essex.

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This study investigates sociolinguistic variation in the traditional dialect of Sūf, a Hōrāni town in northern Jordan. Two variables are examined: (k): depalatalization of /k/; and (l): develarization of /l/, according to internal linguistic constrains and two external social factors: namely age and sex. Conditioned palatlalization of /k/ and the presence of a dark allophone of /l/ are two of the most salient phonological features of the dialects of Hōrān in general. The present study provides a quantitative analysis within the framework of Variationist Theory, using the multiple logistic regression program Rbrul. Palatalization of /k/ is treated at two levels and thus involves two variables: 1. Phonological variable (k); the pool of data for this variable includes tokens of /k/ in the stem of the word. 2. Morphophonemic variable (–ik); the pool of data includes tokens of /k/ in the feminine suffix -ik. Analysis of the data shows that the rate of palatalization in the stem is relatively low (11%), and the palatalized variant [ʧ] may be disappearing, constrained by preceding and following linguistic environments, age and gender. By contrast, the palatalized variant in the suffix shows a relatively high rate of maintenance (70%), and variation in its use in the suffix is constrained by the social variables only. With respect to (l), the study found that dark /l/ is used only in (12%), and Rbrul analysis returned preceding and following linguistic environments, and gender as constraining factors. Overall, the results show that women are more conservative with respect to the usage of both of these traditional features, thus indicating that women preserve the local way of speech more consistently. The thesis adopts a method of interpretation of the results that focuses on local issues, including the social structure of the community, space, the local mode of production and gender roles.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Language and Linguistics, Department of
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 20 Sep 2016 09:25
Last Modified: 20 Sep 2016 09:25

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