I've noticed many young people mispronounce R, substituting it with W (Johnathon Woss is the only example I can think of off the top of my head.)
Have any studies been done on this pattern of usage, and what words would I need to include in my search terms?
Thanks very much for any help.
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I've noticed many young people mispronounce R, substituting it with W (Johnathon Woss is the only example I can think ... studies been done on this pattern of usage, and what words would I need to include in my search terms?

It isn't really a mispronunciation, more a speech impediment. I wouldn't say it had a "pattern of usage".
Woy Jenkins was another example.

Don Aitken
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I've noticed many young people mispronounce R, substituting it with ... what words wouldI need to include in my search terms?

It isn't really a mispronunciation, more a speech impediment. I wouldn't say it had a "pattern of usage". Woy Jenkins was another example.

I substituted /w/ for /r/ when I was a young child. I got speech therapy for it in grade school. One name given to this phenomenon is "rhotacism." Here's a definition from the dictionary at Infoplease. com :

http://www.infoplease.com/ipd/A0626963.html
"2. excessive use of the sound (r), its misarticulation, or the substitution of another sound for it."
As you can see, this definition is not sufficiently narrow to indicate simply the substitution of /w/ for /r/.
I'd like to know more about the use of this term among British black youth. Can it be considered a dialectal usage or is it mainly the children of African immigrants who use it? Some Africans, it appears, have trouble with the /r/ sound. The African pirate in the original version of the Asterix books and some of the Africans in Tintin au Congo (which has not been translated into English) appear unable to pronounce the /r/.

Raymond S. Wise
Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
E-mail: mplsray @ yahoo . com
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I've noticed many young people mispronounce R, substituting it with ... words would I need to include in my search terms?

It isn't really a mispronunciation, more a speech impediment.

Listen to "Mash Up" on this page.

I wouldn't say it had a "pattern of usage".

I would, if it is not a speech defect but an accent.
It isn't really a mispronunciation, more a speech impediment. I wouldn't say it had a "pattern of usage". Woy Jenkins was another example.

I substituted /w/ for /r/ when I was a young child. I got speech therapy for it in grade school. ... of the Africans in Tintin au Congo (which has not been translated into English) appear unable to pronounce the /r/.

It's not unusual in the white population, especially in East London. Various members of the cast of Eastenders have been prime examples - Peter Dean especially and, more recently, Barbara Windsor. It's sufficiently well known in the South that a 'comedian', Michael Barrymore, parodies it with 'Aw wight? Aw wight at the fwont?'. I suspect that it's not a very strong parody since I think he would have difficulty actually saying 'All right?' His natural accent puts his 'r' sound somewhere between 'r' and 'w', perhaps leaning more closely to 'w'.

John Dean
Oxford
I've noticed many young people mispronounce R, substituting

replacing, not substituting
it with W (Johnathon

Does he really spell it that way?
Woss is the only example I can think of off the top of my head.)

Have we already forgotten Fwank Mew-ah?
Have any studies been done on this pattern of usage,

Dunno.
and what words would I need to include in my search terms?

No joke try "Elmer Fudd." No joke. "Rhotic" may or may not help.
Thanks very much for any help.

De nada.

Bob Lieblich
Who only appears hopelessly confused
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
I substituted /w/ for /r/ when I was a young child. I got speech therapyfor it in grade school. One name given to this phenomenon is "rhotacism."

Rhotacism means adding or pronouncing an /r/ where there was none before. This phenomenon should perhaps be called "wotacism".

Do you think I could copyright that term?
By the way, does anyone know if Mel Gibson has retained the biblical line "Welease Bwian" in his new film?
Alan
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Alan Crozier
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"Rhotacism" means many things. As a medical term, however, it is limited to imperfect pronunciation of /r/, as you can see by going to www.onelook.com , entering the term, and taking a look at the entries in the three medical dictionaries listed.
Of those, Dorland's Illustrated Medical Dictionary at

http://www.mercksource.com/pp/us/cns/cns hl dorlands.jspzQzpgzEzzSzppdocszSzuszSzcommonzSzdorlandszSzdorlandzSzdmd r 13zPzhtm#1097523

or
http://tinyurl.com/2nhxo
helpfully lists "pararhotacism" as a synonym. But a look at the entry for "pararhotacism" shows it to simply be identified as "rhotacism."

What I would like to know is whether the professionals who currently diagnose speech disorders would identify the use of /w/ for /r/ as "rhotacism" or whether they would be more likely refer to it in some other fashion.

Raymond S. Wise
Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
E-mail: mplsray @ yahoo . com
It isn't really a mispronunciation, more a speech impediment.

Listen to "Mash Up" on this page.


I wouldn't say it had a "pattern of usage".

I would, if it is not a speech defect but an accent.It is, of course, both. Ross, Jenkins and Muir have/had "speech impediments".

m.
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