Nina Sudimac, Violeta Stojičić

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Following the principles of lexical borrowing which regulate the phonological adaptation of English loanwords in the Serbian language, we investigate the acoustics of the partial transphonemization of three English vowels. We have employed the Praat software in the acoustic analysis of speech to measure the values of the first three formants and the duration of vowels in accented positions in a sample of English loanwords integrated into Serbian in contrast to the corresponding vowels in English words. First, we contrast the acoustic features of the English vowels /ʌ/, /ɪ/ and /ʊ/ and the Serbian vowels /ɑ/, /i/ and /u/ by measuring the first three formants of the vowels in speech produced by English-Serbian native bilingual speakers. Second, we measure the duration of vowels in pairs of English words and their replicas in Serbian which we labelled ‘false acoustic pairs’ due to the differences in vowel length. The results verify the principle of substitution which governs the integration of loanwords on the phonological level in Serbian as a borrowing language, which requires that borrowed words comply with the phonological system of the language, in which case the phonological adaptation of phonemes of different qualities is partial.


loanword, phonological adaptation, transphonemization, English, Serbian

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