The state of Spanish /s/ variation in Concepción, Chile: Linguistic and social trends

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Abstract

The current study examines /s/ variation in the southern-central city of Concepción, Chile and its relation to a variety of linguistic and social factors. A proportional-odds mixed effects model, with the random factor of “speaker”, was used to treat the categorically coded data on a continuum of acoustical variation ([s] > [h] > ∅). The results presented show that contrary to the previous assertions, heavy sibilant reduction, especially elision, in Concepción, Chile is the rule, rather than the exception, to the extent that it is no longer a marker of certain social demographics as has been reported previously. Furthermore, based on the trends reported, it is likely that this has been the case for several decades. Finally, the overall observed trends are indicative that the rates of /s/ elision will continue to increase across social demographics and different phonetic and phonological contexts in Concepción, Chile.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)132-153
JournalOpen Linguistics
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 11 2020

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