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Title: Ethnicity and tone production on Singlish particles
Authors: Soh, Ying Qi
Lee, Junwen
Tan, Ying Ying
Keywords: Humanities::Linguistics
Issue Date: 2022
Source: Soh, Y. Q., Lee, J. & Tan, Y. Y. (2022). Ethnicity and tone production on Singlish particles. Languages, 7(3), 7030243-.
Project: MOE2019-T2-1-084 
Journal: Languages 
Abstract: Recent research on Singlish, also known as Colloquial Singapore English, suggests that it is subject to ethnic variation across the three major ethnic groups in Singapore, namely Chinese, Malay, and Indian. Discourse particles, said to be one of the most distinctive features of the language, are nevertheless commonly used by bilinguals across all three ethnic groups. This study seeks to determine whether there are ethnic differences in the pitch contours of Singlish discourse particles produced by Singlish speakers. Four hundred and forty-four tokens of three Singlish particles, sia24, meh55, and what21, produced by the three groups of English-speaking bilingual speakers were drawn from the National Speech Corpus, and the pitch contours extracted and normalized. Statistical analysis of the overall pitch contours, the three acoustic parameters of mean pitch, pitch range, and pitch movement, and the variability of these parameters showed that the effect of ethnicity on the three acoustic parameters was not statistically significant and that the pitch contours of each particle were generally similar across ethnic groups. The results of this study suggest that Singlish may be acquired as a first language by Singaporean speakers, pre-empting any ethnic differences in the production of the particles that might otherwise have resulted from the speakers’ differing language repertoires.
ISSN: 2226-471X
DOI: 10.3390/languages7030243
Schools: School of Humanities 
Rights: © 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https:// 4.0/).
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SoH Journal Articles

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