The SpecGram Inquisition—Mikael Thompson—with Inquisitor Generalis Jonathan Downie SpecGram Vol CLXX, No 2 Contents What English Needs—By Peter William Carrillo

Plentiful Things You Didn’t Know You Didn’t Know
(because they aren’t actually true)

gathered at great personal risk of
psycholinguistic harm from actual student papers
by Madalena Cruz-Ferreira

This 43rd collection of students’ pearls of wisdom, laboriously digitised from hand-written papers, demonstrates once again how students new to the study of language speculate about grammar after having imperfectly absorbed what their teachers think they have taught them.

Test Question—Phonemic Analysis

Use classical phonemic principles to propose an account of the phonemic status of the voiced alveolar trill [r] and the voiced uvular trill [ʀ] in each of the three languages below.

  1. In some varieties of Southern Swedish, [ʀ] occurs in syllable onsets while [r] occurs in syllable codas.

  2. Speakers of some varieties of Dutch prefer [r] for everyday uses, for example in words like [proˈχrɑmaː] ‘programme’, but use [ʀ], e.g. [pʀoˈχʀɑmaː], when announcing programmes on national television.

  3. In Provençal, the word for ‘evening’ is [sɛʀo], and the word for ‘saw (noun)’ is [sɛro].


More to come...

The SpecGram InquisitionMikael Thompsonwith Inquisitor Generalis Jonathan Downie
What English NeedsBy Peter William Carrillo
SpecGram Vol CLXX, No 2 Contents