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Varieties of Spoken French$
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Sylvain Detey, Jacques Durand, Bernard Laks, and Chantal Lyche

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199573714

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199573714.001.0001

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French in Paris (Île-de-France)

French in Paris (Île-de-France)

A speaker from the 14th arrondissement

(p.123) 8 French in Paris (Île-de-France)
Varieties of Spoken French

Anita Berit Hansen

Oxford University Press

Historically, the higher circles of Paris have dictated the bon usage in French pronunciation, and have contributed to the present day Reference French; at the same time, howevr, Paris has preserved some local phonetic features, especially in lower social classes. The young man studied in this chapter is a PhD student, born to Parisian parents and raised in the 14th arrondissement. In the extract, his French is characterized by words from the familiar register (frigo, truc, sympa, clope) and by syntactic structures frequent in spontaneous spoken French (dislocations, clefts, ne-omission, etc.). On the phonetic level, he presents several features of Reference French (a reduced nasal vowel system, loss of /ɑ/, some tendencies towards the reduction of contrasts in mid vowels, three distinct high oral vowels, and an interconsonantal schwa which follows long-established rules). However, his palatalized /k/’s, and his prepausal schwa-tagging makes him sound specifically Parisian.

Keywords:   Paris, obstruent–liquid clusters, nasal vowels, mid vowels, schwa-tagging, palatalization of /k/, prosody of enumeration, prepausal schwa

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