- Canadian raising
Canadian raising is a phonetic phenomenon that occurs in varieties of the
English language, especially Canadian English, in which diphthongs are "raised" before voiceless consonants (e.g., IPA|/p/, IPA|/t/, IPA|/k/, IPA|/s/, IPA|/f/). IPAEng|aɪ (the vowel of "eye") becomes IPA|ʌj, while the outcome of IPA|/aʊ/ (the vowel of "loud") varies by dialect, with IPA| [ʌw] more common in the west and a fronted variant IPA| [ɛʉ] commonly heard in Central Canada. In any case, the IPA|/a/ component of the diphthongchanges from a low vowel to a mid vowel or else a back vowel IPA|( [ʌ] or [ɛ] ). As IPA| [əʊ] is an allophoneof IPA|/oʊ/ (as in "road") in many other dialects, the Canadian pronunciation of "about the house" may sound like "a boat the hoce" to non-Canadians. Some stand-up and situation comedians exaggerate this to "oot and aboot" for comic effect.
It is important that these exaggerated pronunciations, such as "a boot the hoce", are usually only apparent to people "without" Canadian raising. They represent an attempt to imperfectly approximate the sounds they hear with sounds available in their own dialects. Because this approximation is imperfect, individuals who do speak with Canadian raising will frequently be baffled by reports that they are being perceived as saying "aboot".
Geographic distribution of Canadian raising
Despite its name, the phenomenon is not restricted to Canada; it is quite common in
New Englandand Minnesota, Upper Michigan, and other upper Midwestern states, and has been reported in the traditional accent of Martha's Vineyard, as well as in Southern Atlantic varieties of English and in the Fens in England. True Canadian raising affects both the IPA|/aʊ/ and IPA|/aɪ/ diphthongs, but a related phenomenon, of much wider distribution throughout the United States, affects only the IPA|/aɪ/ diphthong. So, whereas the General American pronunciations of "rider" and "writer" are identical IPA| [ɹaɪɾɚ] , those whose dialects include either the full or restricted Canadian raising will pronounce them as IPA| [ɹaɪɾɚ] and IPA| [ɹʌɪɾɚ] , respectively. (In British English, these words would be pronounced IPA| [ɹaɪdə] and IPA| [ɹaɪtə] , respectively.) This raising of IPA|/aɪ/ can be found in the Pacific Northwest, New England, and Philadelphia, and probably in many other parts of the country as well, as it appears to be spreading. Note also that this phenomenon preserves the recoverability of the phonemeIPA|/t/ in "writer" despite the North American English process of flapping, which merges IPA|/t/ and IPA|/d/ into IPA| [ɾ] before unstressed vowels.
Varieties of Canadian raising
Note that, for many speakers,Fact|date=May 2008 Canadian raising applies not only before voiceless consonants, but more generally in a non-final syllable of a
morpheme. This is sensitive to morpheme boundaries in a word. For such speakers, "rider" and "spider" do not rhyme, since the former has a morpheme boundary before the "-er", and hence the voiced IPA|/d/ inhibits raising, whereas the latter has no such boundary, and hence raising can apply freely in a non-morpheme-final syllable. Similarly, "pilot" and "pile it" may be non-homophonous, since the former has a raised diphthong (due to its being in a non-morpheme-final syllable) while the latter has a normal, non-raised diphthong -- although in such circumstances (before resonant consonants, it seems), the raising may be optional for some speakers. There are many other dialect-specific complexities: For example, even the speakers just described, for whom "rider" and "spider" do not rhyme, may differ on whether raising applies in "hydrogen", although unquestionably it does apply to "nitrogen".
The phenomenon of Canadian raising may be related historically to a similar phenomenon that exists in Scots and
Scottish English. The Scottish Vowel Length Rulelengthens a wide variety of vowel sounds in several environments, and shortens them in others; "long" environments include when the vowel precedes a number of voiced consonant sounds. This rule also conditions IPA|/aɪ/ in the long environments and IPA|/əɪ/ in the short environments. Significantly, though, the Scots Vowel Length Rule applies only before voiced fricatives and /r/, whereas Canadian raising is not limited in this fashion; thus, it may represent a sort of merging of the Scots Vowel Length Rule with the general English rule lengthening vowels before voiced consonants of any sort.
The most common understanding of the
Great Vowel Shiftis that the Middle Englishvowels IPA| [iː, uː] passed through a stage IPA| [əɪ, əʊ] on the way to their modern pronunciations IPA| [aɪ, aʊ] . Thus it is difficult to say whether Canadian raising reflects an innovation or the preservation of an older vowel quality in a restricted environment.
*Chambers, J. K. "Canadian raising". "Canadian Journal of Linguistics" 18.2 (1973): 113–35.
*Dailey-O'Cain, J. "Canadian raising in a midwestern U.S. city". "Language Variation and Change" 9,1 (1997): 107-120.
*Labov, W. "The social motivation of a sound change". "Word" 19 (1963): 273–309.
*Wells, J. C. "Accents of English". Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1982.
North American English regional phonology
* [http://www.yorku.ca/twainweb/troberts/raising.html Canadian Raising and Other Oddities] with audio files
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Canadian English — (CanE, en CA) [en CA is the language code for Canadian English , as defined by ISO standards (see ISO 639 1 and ISO 3166 1 alpha 2) and Internet standards (see IETF language tag).] is the variety of English used in Canada. More than 26 million… … Wikipedia
Canadian Maritime English — or Maritimer English is a dialect of English spoken in the Maritime provinces of Canada. Quirks include the removal of pre consonantal /r/ sounds, and a faster speech tempo. It is heavily influenced by British, Irish English, and Acadian French… … Wikipedia
Canadian Shift — The Canadian Shift is a linguistic vowel shift found in Canadian English. It was first described by Clarke, Elms and Youssef in 1995,cite journal last = Clarke first = S. coauthors = Elms, F. amp; Youssef, A. title = The third dialect of English … Wikipedia
Canadian Youth for Choice — (CYC) is a pro choice youth organization based in Ottawa, Ontario.Mathieu, Emily. (June 26, 2007). [http://www.thestar.com/article/229265 Canadian youth on road for sexual health] . Toronto Star. Retrieved September 25, 2007.] Legatos, Jasmin.… … Wikipedia
Canadian federal election, 2008 — 2006 ← members October 14, 2008 (2008 10 14) … Wikipedia
Canadian Museum for Human Rights — Location Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, at the historic Forks Website www.humanrightsmuseum.ca … Wikipedia
Canadian Tulip Festival — Tulips from the 2006 Tulip Festival. Date(s) 3 weekends in May … Wikipedia
Raising the Fawn — is a Canadian indie rock band, with its roots in Toronto. The band is comprised of John Crossingham (who is also a member of Broken Social Scene), Scott Remila and Dylan Green. The band formed in 1997 and released their self titled first album in … Wikipedia
Canadian Centre for International Studies and Cooperation — (CECI (Centre Canadien d Etude et de Cooperation Internationale)) non profit organization helping poor countries and communities, promoting human rights defence and know how exchange for development. Established in 1958 and based in Montreal,… … Wikipedia
Canadian federal election, minor party positions — The policy positions of minor political parties in Canadian federal elections are summarized here by election. 2006 election See also: Canadian federal election, 2006 Taxation: The 2005 federal budget originally implemented relatively modest tax… … Wikipedia