14th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences (ICPhS-14)

San Francisco, CA, USA
August 1-7, 1999

Voice Quality in Glaswegian

Jane Stuart-Smith

Department of English Language, University of Glasgow, Scotland, UK

Glaswegian vernacular is well known for a stereotypical ‘Glasgow voice’, with slack articulation, jaw protrusion, and harsh phonation. The extent to which speakers of Glaswegian really exhibit such features of voice quality remains largely anecdotal. Indeed, bar a few notable exceptions, voice quality has been largely neglected in accounts of regional and social accents of Britain. This paper presents the first sociophonetic description of voice quality in Glaswegian English, based on a perceptual analysis of conversational and read speech from 32 informants, male and female, adults and children, working class and middle class. While the results reveal few indications of stereotypical Glasgow voice quality, they confirm clear differences in voice quality according to social factors. Class differences in voice quality were particularly evident. Interestingly, middle class voice quality can be defined almost entirely in terms of the absence of typical working class settings.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Stuart-Smith, Jane (1999): "Voice quality in Glaswegian", In ICPhS-14, 2553-2556.