James Grama

James Grama
University of Duisburg-Essen | uni-due · Department of Anglophone Studies

Ph.D.

About

18
Publications
3,742
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116
Citations
Introduction
I'm a Research Fellow (Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter) in the Sociolinguistics Lab at the Department of Anglophone Studies at the University of Duisburg-Essen. I am particularly interested in questions surrounding vowel shifts, and how speakers of various social backgrounds respond to, participate in, and drive changes forward. I also have general interests in dialectology, and variation in creoles and under-documented languages.
Additional affiliations
January 2017 - February 2019
Australian National University
Position
  • PostDoc Position

Publications

Publications (18)
Article
Previous panel research has provided individual evidence for aspects of the U-shaped pattern, but these studies typically rely on sampling the same speaker at two points in time, usually in close proximity. As a result, our knowledge about the patterning of age-graded variables across the entire adult life-span is limited. What is needed, thus, is...
Article
Increased global migration to international urban centres has motivated a growing interest in ethnolects and the role migrant communities play in language variation and change. Here, we consider ethnolectal variation in real and apparent time, by examining the realization of word-final (er) (e.g. teacher, remember) in Australian English. We capital...
Article
Full-text available
Depictions of Australian English in theater and film by non-Australian performers are often met with negative public reactions by Australian audiences. This partially stems from misconceptions about Australian vowel pronunciations (e.g., that mate and might are homophones); however, there is also a general lack of awareness about how Australian Eng...
Article
Full-text available
Forced aligners have revolutionized sociophonetics, but while there are several forced aligners available, there are few systematic comparisons of their performance. Here, we consider four major forced aligners used in sociophonetics today: MAUS, FAVE, LaBB-CAT and MFA. Through comparisons with human coders, we find that both aligner and phonologic...
Article
Full-text available
Until recently, large-scale phonetic analyses have been out of reach for under-documented languages, but with the advent of methodologies such as forced alignment, they have now become possible. This paper describes a methodology for applying forced alignment (using the Montreal Forced Aligner) to a speech corpus of Matukar Panau, a minority langua...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper investigates the initiation, progression, and conditioning of the short-front vowel shift in Australian English as observed in a sociolinguistic corpus capturing 40 years in real time (from the 1970s to today). Acoustic analyses of over 10,000 tokens reveal that the lowering and retraction of KIT, DRESS and TRAP was preceded by movement...
Presentation
Hawai‘i is home to many languages, including an English-lexified creole, known locally as Pidgin. Despite much work on the development of Pidgin, little is known about the acoustic properties of Pidgin consonants. This talk presents results from an analysis of word-initial plosives produced by eight speakers of Pidgin across two age groups, investi...
Presentation
Hawai'i is home to an English-lexified creole, known locally as Pidgin. While much research has focused on the structural development of Pidgin (e.g., Bickerton & Odo 1976), little work has investigated acoustic phonetic variation in the Pidgin vowel system. This talk presents results from an analysis of 854 tokens of /a/ produced by 32 speakers of...
Article
This paper provides an acoustic phonetic description of Hawai‘i English vowels. The data comprise wordlist tokens produced by twenty-three speakers (twelve males and eleven females) and spontaneous speech tokens produced by ten of those speakers. Analysis of these vowel tokens shows that while there are similarities between Hawai‘i English and othe...
Thesis
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This dissertation presents an acoustic phonetic examination of the vowel systems of 32 Hawaiʻi Creole speakers with special attention paid to how these vowel realizations have changed across time, gender, phonological context, and the number of Hawaiʻi Creole morpho-syntactic features exhibited by speakers. This research was motivated by an interes...
Article
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This study provides the first examination of perceptual dialectology within Hawaiʻi. While previous work investigated Hawaiʻi Locals’ beliefs about language use, it located Hawaiʻi within the context of the United States. In contrast, respondents in this study focus on the island of Oʻahu. Using a blank map, respondents mark boundaries where they b...
Article
Full-text available
Using an apparent time approach and acoustic phonetic analysis, this study provides the first description of sociolinguistic variation in the realizations of the short-front vowels in Hawaiʻi English. We demonstrate thatthe realizations of the short-front vowels in Hawaiʻi are conditioned by speaker sex and age, and whether anindividual self-identi...
Article
Full-text available
Labov (2001:167–68) makes the claim that English speech communities use F2 in vowels to establish social identity, while they use F1 chiefly for the cognitive differentiation of vowel phonemes. However, little work has been done to address whether this observation holds in perception. By using a forced-choice, matched-guise experiment, this paper i...
Article
Full-text available
This article documents the acoustic properties of the vowels of young adults from various regions of California, with special attention to a chain shift that lowers short front vowels /I/ (as in kit), /epsilon/ (as in dress), and /ae/ (as in trap). It also tracks the centralization of /ow/ (as in goat). Quantitative analysis of subjects' formants s...

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