Sunday 31 July 2016

Transcriptions can be embarrassing!

This blog entry contains a word which some readers may find upsetting!

The transcription text in one of the final written tests this term contained the sentence:"[...] you can't talk without intonation [...]". Some of my young professionals transcribed it like this: /ju kʌnt tɔːk wɪðaʊt ɪntəneɪʃən/. Ahem!

Monday 25 July 2016

intrusive r but no linking r

John Wells spotted an interesting combination of using an intrusive r with avoiding a linking r. This nice example was to be heard in a presentation by Mark Tully on the 24th of July, 2016 on BBC Radio 4 in the weekly series Something Understood. Here are Tully's words:

Is the wind one of the wonders of nature which connect us to God, which so overawe us that we lose our self-awareness and experience the transcendent?
[ɪz ðə wɪnd wʌn əv ðə wʌndəz əv neɪʧə wɪʧ kənekt ʌs tə gɒd wɪʧ səʊ ʔəʊvəʔɔːr ʌs ðt wi luːz ɑː selfəwɛːnəs ənd ɪkspɪərɪəns ðə trænsendənt]
Listen particularly to the highlighted section.
Sir Mark is presently the regular presenter of the weekly programme mentioned above.

Friday 22 July 2016

from an oral exam

In an oral exam in English literature a student of ours was asked several questions about Anne Brontë's novel Agnes Grey. The (German) candidate described the desire of Agnes to become a governess by citing this sentence from the novel:
To train the tender plants, and watch their /bʌts/ unfolding day by day.

Anne Brontë