Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Fy is approximately high front

You might know that I'm teaching Mike Swedish. Ok, ok, he's learning Swedish and I'm trying to take credit for it. That's besides the point.

One of the first words he picked up was 'fy' (The People's Dictionary translates it to 'ugh' which is an odd choice - I'd go for 'shame on you'. Depending on context, obviously.). Only he reckons I put an alveolar lateral approximant in there. Whassat? An /l/ sound.

My thoughts exactly: I most certainly do not!

So what's the reason for this? Is it me slurring sounds together and producing a holy mess of highfrontlateralness? Or is it Mike's ears making stuff up? I think it's a bit of both.

My articulation of the high front vowel (/i/ or /y/) is really quite close in Swedish. And I can see how it can be heard as an approximant. Though perhaps something more front than /l/ - labio-palatal perhaps. (Please note that when I suggested this to Mike he laughed. Hmph.)

And I've still not forgiven the person who suggested to Mike that this makes me sound posh. I'll never hear the end of it.

1 comment:

Joanna said...

Julia: "Do you know what 'fil' means?" (a kind of yoghurt)
Mike: "That's what you say to me when I've misbehaved."