I don't speak with a Geordie accent, I speak, like, the Northern accent: Contact-induced levelling in the Tyneside vowel system

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Evidence is presented in this paper of the levelling of the Tyneside (Newcastle) English vowel system toward that of a putative regional standard. This process is hypothesised to follow from the fragmentation of tight-knit urban communities that formed after large-scale immigration to Tyneside from elsewhere in the British Isles during the 18th and 19th centuries. High levels of dialect contact brought about by this influx are argued to have promoted the creation of an urban koiné, which in its contemporary form appears increasingly to be losing specifically local features. In addition to contact and mobility as agents of change, the history of unusually acute stigma attached to Tyneside speech should be considered. These and other social factors inform an analysis of the FACE and GOAT variables in the speech of 32 contemporary Tyneside English speakers of various ages, both sexes and from two social class groups.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-63
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Sociolinguistics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2002

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