Regional variation in words

Discussion in 'General Chatter' started by seebs, May 21, 2015.

  1. Verily

    Verily surprised Xue Yang peddler

    On a completely different topic, I ended up talking to a Dane about how challenging it is to be clear about pronunciation while whispering. I was incredibly confused because this is not a problem I’ve ever considered, or heard anyone mention before.

    After a while I started wondering if maybe it had something to do not with either of us personally, but with the phonology of Danish as compared to English. We were speaking in English, but it might not stop being a consideration for a native speaker of Danish even while parsing other languages.

    Well it turns out Denmark has refined vocal fry into a consonant, called stød. My bff is out of town. I’m dying to get her input on this and its implications for whispering, but meanwhile I’m just trying to figure out how one would possibly replicate the end of “hund” without using vocal chords. Maybe if it’s close enough to a glottal stop to confuse linguists, that’s an option? But I don’t speak Danish, more’s the pity.

    How easy would you consider it to be to pronounce words clearly and/or understand other people while whispering in any language(s) you speak? What language was your first?

    It has never occurred to me that it would be an issue at all. I have no trouble whispering or understanding whispers in English, my first and only fluent language.

    I can whisper perfectly fine in Japanese. I have not tested how well people understand me, but I’d be surprised if there were an issue.

    I have not tried to whisper in Brazilian Portuguese, which I speak exceedingly poorly, but I love ASMR videos of people reading books in Brazilian Portuguese. I think it’s the most beautiful language for whispering, and have not noticed any more trouble understanding it when whispered.
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  2. rats

    rats 21 Bright Forge Shatters The Void

    yeahhh thats a thing. my bf has said its to do with mandarin being the Big Boss Enforced Language back in mainland china so it became the best thing to learn for business etc.
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  3. keltka

    keltka the green and brown one

    Oof :/ that makes sense
    it's funny because I think almost every person I met back home used "lychee" so it seems like some cantonese pronunciations take precedence over the more commonly taught mandarin language
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  4. Re Allyssa

    Re Allyssa Sylph of Heart

    @Verily well whispering means that you can't make any voiced sounds correctly. I figure most people can guess what's being said from context and from being used to hearing the sounds in their native language.

    But like, try quickly switching back and forth between "duh" and "tuh" while whispering. Eventually they sound really similar and the only reason you know the difference is because you know what sound you're trying to make.
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  5. Verily

    Verily surprised Xue Yang peddler

    Yeah, you’re totally right about that. Voiced vs. unvoiced is definitely gonna have to rely largely on context or exaggeration of slight differences. I’m personally more likely to let a lot more air pass with a t than a d if I want to exaggerate. (Hold hand in front of mouth, see how much wind you feel.)

    After it had ended, I realized the conversation with the Dane was very much about the mechanics of how you could make a recognizable version of a noise at all, due to having to change the way you move your mouth. It was just such a foreign concept to me.

    Seems like tonal languages may also be challenging for whispering.
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  6. Everett

    Everett local rats so small, so tiny

    my mom grew up in BC canada and got dried lychee from a door to door fruit seller i think (this was the 50s/60s) and pronounced it leechee
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  7. Acey

    Acey hand extended, waiting for a shake

    Re: lychee, I spell it...well, lychee, and I pronounce it LEE-chee. I've seen litchi used in various contexts, and Chrome's spellcheck seems to think it's the correct spelling, but given that it's apparently a transliteration of a Chinese word (which I did not know until reading this thread!) I'm guessing they're both correct?
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  8. Deresto

    Deresto Foolish Mortal

    Thing I just noticed, my sis is playing a game and said "aw damn I haven't been checking the jars" jars being drawers. I said "jars? Don't you mean joors?" And I realized I probably have more of a Texas accent than I think I do lol
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  9. shmeed

    shmeed plant me

    does anyone say "frosty dairy" instead of "frosty" a la the wendys milkshake
  10. Deresto

    Deresto Foolish Mortal

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  11. Lebesgue Integreat

    Lebesgue Integreat Lesbian Intrigue

    I pronounce lychee the same way a bunch of people on here do, lee-chee. I haven't heard the word in YEARS but distinctly remember because when I first learned the word in middle school I instantly fell in love with it and just said it non-stop for like 2 weeks just because I found it so funny the way it was pronounced.

    Also, what do you call your years of school before college? North East US for me and Pre-school/PreK, Kindergarten, grades 1-12 with 9-12 being Freshman, Sophomore, Junior, and Senior year of high school respectively. Middle school is grades 6-8, and elementary school is grades 1-5.
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  12. Wingyl

    Wingyl Allegedly Magic

    years 1 to 13

    years 1 to 8 are primary and intermediate (i think years 7 and 8 are the intermediate years?) and then 9-13 are high school
  13. Morgan Jae

    Morgan Jae pecure. sontain. crotect.

    same, northwest US
  14. Everett

    Everett local rats so small, so tiny

    Ontario Canada

    (edit i forgot preschool)
    Junior kindergarten, senior kindergarten, and grades 1-8 were all at the same school for me (my older brother had to go elsewhere for 7&8 but they had added the extra grades by the time i reached that stage) so i call that whole dealie elementary or public school. I understand from context that middle school is like...6 to 8 but i literally stayed at the same school so whatever, middle school = tween years (edit: this whole k-8 can also be "grade school")

    High school or secondary school is gradws 9-12, plus a "victory lap" if you graduate and then come back for a 5th year. I only heard anyone call these grades 'freshman' etc in fiction or talking about american stuff
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
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  15. Lebesgue Integreat

    Lebesgue Integreat Lesbian Intrigue

    Why would you go back for a 5th year?
  16. Everett

    Everett local rats so small, so tiny

    I wanted a few more courses and i wasnt ready for college yet, or you want to do co ops or something
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  17. Re Allyssa

    Re Allyssa Sylph of Heart

    Pre-School (Pre-3, Pre-4/Pre-K for schools that have a class for 3yos), Elementary School [primary elsewhere, I think?] (grades 1-5), Middle School (differs sometimes, but for me grades 6-8, if it's 7&8, it's Junior High School and 6 was included in elementary), High School [middle+high = secondary] (grades 9-12, freshman, sophomore, junior, senior, but I always got the impression that it was stealing that from college/university set up, since they're the same)

    Post-secondary = Community college and/or college/university. From what I understand, abroad there's a difference between college and university, but in the US they're generally understood to be the same thing, colloquially. I think college is technically the different schools in the college, which has departments, and then majors.

    mostly Florida, US for my schooling
    (Florida is not Southern, in general)
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  18. Charlie

    Charlie I got no strings to hold me down

    @Everett I'm from Ontario too and pretty much yeah, 100% all of that. Literally, I'm still confused about what sophomore and shit like that mean because it wasn't applied irl.

    Apparently some ppl in Ontario do attend middle school? But yeah most people I know went to 1-8 elementary schools.
    • Like x 1
  19. Everett

    Everett local rats so small, so tiny

    My friend went to a french immersion school up to grade 6 i think, then another one for 7&8 before going to the same hs as me so i guess that counts
  20. Loq

    Loq rotating like a rotisserie chicknen

    same region, same words, but it took me until 11th grade to figure out what the single-year words besides 'freshman' meant
    • Like x 1
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