This book, first published in 1984, presents a series of analysis of colloquial spoken language, to illustrate some of the variety of phonological features of British English. These studies provide significant insights into linguistic varieties and their inter-relationship as a phonological system and into social differentiation as reflected in linguistic variety.
The main part of the book is devoted to a presentation, in transcription, of the speech of informants from a number of localities and a discussion of the main phonological features exemplified thereby. An attempt was made to induce natural conversation rather than use direct question-and-answer techniques. Although the book cannot provide a comprehensive survey of the infinite variety of spoken British English, the material does come from a wide age range, both sexes, diverse geographical areas, and both urban and rural communities. It represents a major in-depth analysis that will interest phonologists and workers and students of sociolinguistics.
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