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LINGUIST List 18.2302

Thu Aug 02 2007

Qs: Need for Rhotacized Vowels

Editor for this issue: Dan Parker <danlinguistlist.org>

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        1.    Sherri Condon, Need for Rhotacized Vowels

Message 1: Need for Rhotacized Vowels
Date: 01-Aug-2007
From: Sherri Condon <scondonmitre.org>
Subject: Need for Rhotacized Vowels
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My colleagues and I are working on sound/spelling correspondences, and we
find that for our purposes, it works better not to represent English
sequences like ''er'' in ''letter'' and ''or'' in ''work'' as [ɚ] and [ɝ],
but as [ər] and [ɜr]. We're trying to decide whether we can eliminate the
rhotacized vowels from our tools altogether, but we are working with
languages other than English and would like the tools to be general enough
to work with any language.

So my question is whether anyone knows of a language for which treating
rhotacized vowels as described above would be a problem. An example would
be a language that has rhotacized phonemes and uses script characters to
represent those phonemes that are distinct from the characters used to
represent V + /r/. For our purposes, languages with scripts that do not
reflect pronunciation (like Chinese) are not a concern.

We appreciate being able to consult the collective wisdom of LINGUIST!

Linguistic Field(s): Phonetics
                            Writing Systems

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