LINGUIST List 16.663

Sun Mar 06 2005

FYI: Dialectology Resource; Research Master, Amsterdam

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        1.    Richard Hudson, Web Resource: English Dialectology Recordings
        2.    Lucy Wenting, Research Master: Cognitive Science, Amsterdam

Message 1: Web Resource: English Dialectology Recordings

Date: 06-Mar-2005
From: Richard Hudson <>
Subject: Web Resource: English Dialectology Recordings

Dear Colleague,

I've just discovered a marvelous resource that strikes me as highly
relevant to both teaching and research in English dialectology. It's
been developed over the last couple of years at the British Library by
its Curator of Dialects and Accents (did you know it had one?), Jonny
Robinson, and it consists of 681 digitised recordings (5-10 minutes
each) accompanied by notes combining the styles of Hughes & Trudgill
with John Wells. Better still, the recordings are matched pairs from two
different collections, made in 1950-61 and 1998-9, from the same
locations. I've only explored a few of the items but they seem pretty
good to me. The web site is:

I've pasted below a description of the material that Jonny Robinson sent
me. No doubt he'll be happy to answer queries:

Dick Hudson

"Just to clarify the intentions of the website: I have extracted short
samples (five to ten minutes) from two large audio archives held at the
BL Sound Archive and digitised them for web access. The first archive is
of recordings from the Survey of English Dialects (SED), carried out by
the University of Leeds between 1950 and 1961. A short extract from each
of the recordings held here (288 sites throughout England recorded
between 1952 and 1974) has been digitised and I have written a brief
guide to salient points of the speaker's accent / dialect. This extract
has then been matched to a speaker from the massive Millennium Memory
Bank archive (over 5000 recordings) from an identical or similar
geographic location. The Millennium Memory Bank (MMB) is an archive of
oral history recordings collected by the BBC and BL in 1998/99 and used
for the BBC Local Radio series "The Century Speaks". As such the
speakers were not selected for the purposes of a dialect survey and are
not strictly comparable with the SED speakers. Nonetheless there is a
similar geographic spread and I have made every effort to use speakers
who could be said to be representative of their respective speech
communities - in some cases this is at the "broad" end of the spectrum,
in others less obviously so. There are obvious gaps in the coverage of
urban areas due to the thrust of early dialect surveys, and thus a
further 126 samples of speakers from urban areas within the MMB have
been added to the site. Users can chart the evolution of spoken English
over the last fifty years, and the site documents elements both of
change and continuity. Contrary to popular belief there is still en
enormous amount of linguistic diversity in England and the website
celebrates the rich variety both of the past and indeed of the present.
In total 681 recordings are now live at:

and form part of a website aimed at giving a glimpse of the variety of
holdings within the BL all thematically linked by the concept of "place". I
hope this is helpful."

Richard Hudson, FBA,
Emeritus Professor of Linguistics,
University College London

Linguistic Field(s): Historical Linguistics
Text/Corpus Linguistics

Subject Language(s): English (ENG)

Message 2: Research Master: Cognitive Science, Amsterdam

Date: 04-Mar-2005
From: Lucy Wenting <>
Subject: Research Master: Cognitive Science, Amsterdam

Research master Cognitive Science - Universiteit van Amsterdam

An interdisciplinary approach to cognition

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programme consists of an interdisciplinary core curriculum with a
specialization in one of the two tracks: Cognition, Language and
Communication and Cognition, Brain and Behaviour. The programme includes
high-level facilities for acquiring research skills and offers
special-purpose training in a variety of techniques and methods currently
employed in cognitive science.

The Master Cognitive Science aims at the bright student who wants to be
challenged. The Master's programme is primarily focussed on training you as
a researcher.

The deadline for application is April 1.

More information
See or contact us by email:

Linguistic Field(s): Cognitive Science

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