“I just sound Sco[ʔ]ish now”
The acquisition of word-medial glottal replacement by Polish adolescents in Glasgow
This article investigates the speech of adolescents who have moved directly from Poland to Glasgow, using data from a range of social contexts and comparing their speech to that of their locally-born peer-group. Focusing on the acquisition of word-medial glottal replacement, I find that the Polish participants have replicated one of the constraints shown by their locally-born peers (number of syllables), have come close to replicating another (following segment), and have three which are not significant for the Glaswegians: lexical frequency, preceding segment and speech context. The emergence of the speech context constraint for the Polish group (and not for the Glaswegians) is a novel finding, and sheds light on how learners come to understand and negotiate style in the L2. I suggest that as they are going through the acquisition process, the Polish group use speech context as an interpretive framework around which they structure their stylistic variation.
Keywords: sociolinguistic variation, migration, style, L2, adolescence, second language acquisition, glottal replacement, t-glottaling, Glasgow
Published online: 21 April 2021
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