Different Friends to Different PeoplePlay video
A sketch in which a man switches personas when interacting with different friends, primarily through style-shifting. Lots of speaker design to be the person he thinks each set of friends thinks he is.
Style Shifting Example in Turkish
As a Turkish speaker, I was thinking about a style shifting example in Turkish. To my luck, this video became a 'meme' in Turkish media. This person is speaking, what is considered as the 'Standard Modern Turkish' at the first part of this short video, but then they somehow 'change' their [k] to a [ʔ] in a word (line 4), which does not exist in the Turkish phonemic inventory, but exists in Arabic, Kurdish and Persian, (and this person is 'supposedly' from Eastern Turkey, in which these languages are spoken by some people). They became meme because of their non-standard use of [k], which people found funny, as younger generation in Turkey usually have much more standardized Turkish in contrast to the older generation. This person might have someone at home who speaks one these languages or a dialect that have the glottal stop, and while they are answering the question about the their school, to what seems to be a big crowd of microphones, they shift from the standard to their vernacular, in contrast to their 'effort(?)' to sound more standard, educated and younger(?). In my opinion the shift is caused by attention to speech and/or speaker design. And this shift happens on only one [k], even though there are many other [k]s in the video. Here's the transcript in IPA(might not be 100% correct): 1.g̟yʋɛn vɛɾidʒi zatʰɛn onɫaɾɯ g̟øɾmekʰ 2.ga̟jetʰ g̟yʋɛnli biɾ ʃeçiɾ buɾasɯ 3.ejitʰim atʃʰɯsɯndan da çitʃʰ biɾ sɯkʰɯntʰɯ g̟øɾmyjo̟ɾum bɛn 4.g̟yʋɛnlik̟le (*)aɫaʔaɫɯ çitʃʰ biɾ sɯkʰɯntʰɯmɯz jo̟kʰ 5.bu anɫamda ga̟jetʰ huzuɾɫu̟ju̟z And translation: 1.It's reassuring seeing them(probably police) 2.This is very much a safe city 3.In terms of education, I see no problem 4. We do not have a problem in terms of security 5. We are really at ease.
John Kennedy Is America’s Folksiest Senator. Some People Who Know Him Say It’s An Act.
Touches on differences in the senators accent pre-running vs. post-running/ while democratic vs. republican. Goes into rebranding, 'quotability', being 'folksy' vs. 'educated', "dialing things up a notch for the cameras as most good politicians do"/public persona. Mentions his speech being flat and having faster cadence, then slowing down, 'giving him a distinct vocal style'. [Published on 10-15-2020]
Linguistics prof. analyzes Blink-182 Accent
Article about regional dialect and vocal stylings in pop-punk music. Goes into non-rhoticity and California Shift (article mentions Eckert!) [Published on 06-18-2015]
The Linguistics of 'YouTube Voice'
This brief article characterizes the linguistic style of famous YouTubers, and includes hyperlinks to video examples. The author notes that YouTubers end up sounding very similar, even though their goal is to sound unique. [Published on 12-07-2015]
Singlish FrozenPlay video
A scene from Disney's Frozen, dubbed over in Singlish. Sometimes referred to as the most efficient language, Singlish is a creole language spoken in Singapore that incorporates English as well as various other languages like Cantonese, Malay, and Tamil.
A quick example of uptalkPlay video
A man gives an example of "uptalk" (High Rising Terminal). It's interesting to observe the extralinguistic features he performs when he assumes the persona of an uptalker.
Example of Sajiao vs "Standard" MandarinPlay video
The full video contains many examples of the sajiao or cutesy way of speaking as the members of girl group SNH48 take turns using it. At around 3:20, one member will say a phrase in sajiao, while another repeats the phrase in a more standard manner, highlighting the difference between the two.
White Chicks TrailerPlay video
this is just the trailer, the real artifact is the movie as a whole. Two black men put on whiteface to impersonate rich white women to solve a case for the FBI. The only thing keeping their characters intact is their use of language, which sometimes returns to AAE for comedic contrast. WARNING the movie features some casual homophobia and transphobia.
Fred Armisen Is Really Good At Accents
This is super entertaining if you just want to see how nuanced accents can be and how talented Fred Armisen is when it comes to imitating them, but I also thought it was really interesting how he described his own accents while he was doing them. For example, when asked to do Hamburg, he explained that "Berlin is a little more like loud and confident" while Hamburg is "more educated" and therefore they are "more conservative," hence the difference in their accent. He may have said this for comical reasons, but definitely pointed to how language can index social meanings, and perhaps how social meanings can also contribute to how we consider the sound of accents.
Casual speech in TamilPlay video
Here is a podcast in Tamil (A Dravidian language spoken mainly in South India) where four people share stories from their childhood. We can see how topic (childhood stories), audience (internet listeners), and the speakers themselves (through their own agency) affect style.
Language Bias Among GenerationsPlay video
How the way you speak can show what kind of person you are. Vera Regan, a sociolinguists discusses this topic and how language is always changing. This can vary from word order, to the ways things are said differently and can mean the same thing, to the ways that different generations speak. Dependent on what generation you are from, you might have different rules for the way to speak and understand languages. This can lead to language ideologies and how one generation believes how everyone that speaks that language should speak.
Workplace Norms Conveyed Through RapPlay video
The Office is a popular show on NBC from which we can apply linguistic concepts to. In this short clip Dwight and Michael compose a rap for new members of the office that have relocated from another geographical area. This rap is used to introduce the new hires to the social workplace norms that typically take place at Dunder Mifflin. Dwight and Michael utilize rap and rhyming to make the song seem more comical and appealing to the individuals they have never met before. They also try hard to make their office seem "cool" and "inviting."
Larry the Cable Guy: My fake southern accentPlay video
Larry the Cable Guy explains where he picked up his southern accent and gives examples of code-switching.
Ear Hustle Podcast
This podcast, "Ear Hustle" discusses the reality of life in prison, created in a prison by prisoner Earlonne Woods and a prison volunteer and artist named Nigel Poor. The first episode, "Cellies" describes the meaning of the word "Ear Hustle" which is synonymous with eavesdropping. Prison language and the language used outside of prison is highly various. This is just an example of various language used in prison and the connection to prison culture. [Published on 06-14-2017]
Nicki Minaj Talks Entrepreneurship and Being a Female Rapper on The Queen Latifah ShowPlay video
Rapper Nicki Minaj is interviewed by Queen Latifah
Excerpt from Donald Glover'sPlay video
I used these four songs, a clip from "Weirdo," and this interview of Donald Glover's coronal stop deletion.
Oprah and Elie WieselPlay video
A video of Oprah speaking with a Holocaust survivor that I used in my analysis of her style shifts.
Jackie Aina's Review of Inclusive Fenty BeautyPlay video
Jackie Aina is a popular black makeup artist and YouTuber who frankly discusses issues of race. She also frequently employs some features of African American English along with Standard English, unlike some other popular black beauty YouTubers who use more Standard English in their videos.
Chrish - Indie girl introduces us to her kitchen (Vine)Play video
This vine parodies a female indie pop singer's voice.
Lake Bell Calls Girls Out On "Sexy Baby Vocal Virus"Play video
This video clip shows Lake Bell on Conan O’Brien’s talk show. While discussing her upcoming movie, Bell goes into discussion about her annoyance with what she calls “sexy baby vocal virus” and vocal fry. Lake demonstrates what she means by each of these, as well as explains what they are. Both pitch and vocal fry are the main features of these vocal habits. Bell also makes a gender specific claim, that it is women who fall into this habit of speech. Also, during the clip, while talking about her new movie about voice overs, both Bell and O’Brien style-shift between voices and different ways of speaking, representing performativity.
Vocal Fry: The RulesPlay video
A somewhat comedic look at what vocal fry is and a plea from the video's author to stop it. The narrator talks about vocal fry's spread across various mediums and how it may be a reaction to rising vocal intonation that went way too far.
School of Rock First DayPlay video
This is a clip from the movie School of Rock when Jack Black who plays Newy Finn has his first day as a substitute teacher. The language that he uses and the way he communicates is very out of role than what a student would expect from a teacher. Teachers are expected to all be in one speech community and Jack Black shows that he is not part of that speech community that most teachers are in.
Maz Jobrani: Comedy TedTalk in QatarPlay video
Maz Jobrani is an Iranian-American who does a lot of comedy to bridge Americans with the Middle East, and to bring awareness of Middle Easterners.
Key and Peele- Job InterviewPlay video
In this video, the scene depicts a situation where Jordan Peele is acting out as a guy waiting to go into an interview for a new job. Peele hears laughing from the room where the interview is going on, and Peele sees the boss and the other potential new employee get along well. Peele at the end of the video changes his behavior and becomes more eccentric and outgoing.
A Few Things to Know About American Sign LanguagePlay video
Similar to the different accents that exist in the English language, different styles of sign language express different cultural upbringings. This video is a short personal account into a few individual’s experiences with sign language and its perception from none deaf people. Explaining issues like the use of the term “hearing impaired”, is considered more offensive than being labeled deaf because it does not recognize deaf people as a “linguistic minority”. The point is that deaf people have a culture. One of the speakers talks about how slang has influenced ASL specifically in the African-American cultural community. Being deaf does not exclude people from existing in a living language that adapts and changes to fit the times. Rich with the impact of various cultures.
Die Antwoord's Evil Boy: A Dynamic Crossroad of Language, Culture, and Rap in South AfricaPlay video
Die Antwoord is a controversial rap group from Cape Town, South Africa fronted by Ninja Yolandi Vi$$er. Speaking from a post-apartheid perspective, this group offers an underrepresented view of young, lower-middle class, white Afrikaans - a subculture known as "Zef." Historically, Zef has been considered a derogatory term describing someone who was white, poor, and "trashy." However, Die Antwoord and others have looked to transform this into a self-reflective, somewhat satirical, parody that Ninja described as being "apocalyptic debris that we’ve stuck together." In this music video, they display their unique code-switching between Afrikaans and English, as well as Xhosa - the Bantu language of the Xhosa people. Adding to their mixed-bag controversial nature, is the relationship of the Afrikaans languages’ association with apartheid. Through dynamic language and visual use, this video reflects the complex sociocultural and sociolinguistic interactions that occur in this region. The lyrical narrative told is a statement on the clash between traditional tribal circumcision rituals, and the modern subcultures that seem to offer an alternative path to "manhood." This can be heard in the verse by the guest rapper Wanga, sung in his native tongue: "Mamelapa umnqunduwakho! (listen here, you fucking asshole) Andifuni ukuyaehlatini! (I don't want to go to the bush with you) Sukubammba incanca yam! (don't touch my penis) Andi so stabani! (I’m not a gay) Incanca yam yeyamantobi! (this penis is for the girls) Incanca yam iclean! (my penis is clean) Incanca yam inamandla! (my penis is strong) Ndiyinkwekwe enkulu! (I am a big boy) Angi funi ukuba yeendota! (don't want to be a man) Evil boy 4 life! yebo! (yes) Evil boy 4 life!" Through the use of polyglossic code-switching, performativity, sociocultural and racial integration, and a revamping of contextual meanings, Die Antwoord is doing its part to redefine what it means to be young and Zef in South Africa, and what a socioculturally- and sociolinguistically-complex rebellion sounds like.
Vocal Fry still an issue
In this video the Kardashians use vocal fry by using words such as "like" and a higher pitched tone like the "valley girl" voice. In society media sometimes stereotypes girls as being materialistic, self absorbed, sassy, etc. The Kardashians are very popular with society and when they talk like this on television I think it gives society a sort of realization that women really do talk and act like that. This is not the case however, but I think we all know that. The Kardashians are very influential to young women in America and could potentially have vocal fry being used more frequently in the U.S. It also seems that the Kardashians have more layed back tones when at home but when in public it seems their style of speaking and tone of voice changes slightly. [Published on 03-12-2017]
John Oliver and Jimmy Fallon Talk AccentsPlay video
There are a few instances in this video that relate to or bring up some sort of sociolinguistic/sociocultural linguistic norm or topic, but the main one that sticks out comes up at about 1:00, a minute into the video. John Oliver, who is an English comedian, writer, producer, political commentator, actor, media critic, and television host of the HBO political talk show Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. He is asked about his 18-month-old son and whether or not he will have an English accent or not. Oliver goes on for a bit poking fun at American accents after explaining that his son will most likely NOT have an English accent, where he jokingly says, when talking to Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon who has an American Accent, "the way you make words sound hurts my ears", and when explaining how he will speak in a different manner, he again jokingly says he will be speaking "worse". The main example he presents though is at the 1:50 minute mark when talking about the difference between American and English accents and whether it makes it harder to communicate in America. Oliver goes on to explain that for people without an American accent, automated machines are a "real problem". He jokingly makes a comparison in which he says when dealing with automated machine people without American accents are "battered down into submission by the machine until you talk like a sedated John Wayne" after which he does an impression of...a sedated John Wayne, in which he speaks with a stereotypical American accent. This last bit is very interesting because even though he talks about it in joking, light-hearted manner, he brings up strong evidence for people without American accents being "battered down into submission" to not use their accents. In these situations, people without American accents are forced to accommodate their speech and change it to sound more American which also relates to Style-Shifting. To me, there is also a slight bit of globalization too in a similar way to what I just mentioned. It is most likely indirectly but it is pushing towards just a plain American accent to be used.
Troy and Abed Being Normal Scene from CommunityPlay video
In this scene Troy and Abed, who typically behave far from socially acceptable, try to be "normal" so they do not embarrass their friend Shirley at her wedding. They each change their voice to diminish any distinctive characteristics and accents as well choosing words and using grammar that supports what might be considered a "standard" form of English. They do their best not to be sarcastic and to talk to others in a way that follows social norms.
Hillary Clinton - Southern AccentPlay video
In this clip from an interview with the South Carolina Democratic Chairman, Jaime Harrison, Hillary Clinton accommodates her speech style by speaking with a Southern accent. The accent is a speech style that only appears in speeches with Southern audiences.
New Girl - Schmidt & Winston Crack ScenePlay video
In this scene, Schmidt tries to help Winston stay true to himself, and Winston suggests they can do this by getting cocaine. Schmidt tries to accommodate Winston by going to a rougher neighborhood. Schmidt tries to fit into the situation at hand, albeit often unsuccessfully, but his linguistic style-shifting is most apparent as he tries to get the "drug dealer's" attention.
lesson 7.1 Tokyo vs Osaka Accent - same words, different soundsPlay video
The differences in intonation between Osaka dialect and Tokyo dialect. Tokyo dialect is accepted as standard Japanese and is what is taught outside of Japan. In the video, the Osaka dialect speaker says that she is able to speak standard Japanese very well, but her pronunciation of "sensei" is what clued people in to her Osaka origins.
Donald Trump’s strange speaking style, as explained by linguists
This article has linguists examine Donald Trumps speaking style. It examines his linguistic approach through many different angles and talks about why some people can relate to it more than others. It proves how language and power can play a pivotal role in politics and spreading a message. [Published on 09-26-2016]
Lying Words: Predicting Deception From Linguistic Styles
This article studies how our linguistic styles differ when we are telling a lie. It uses a “computer based-text analysis program” to study whether study participants were telling the truth or not. It was able to correctly identify the liars and truth tellers at a rate of 61% overall. This article shows how liars showed “lower cognitive complexity, used fewer self-references and other-references, and used more negative emotion words.” [Published on 06-01-2002]
Talk “Like a Man”: The Linguistic Styles of Hillary Clinton, 1992-2013
This article examines the changes in Hillary Clinton's linguistic style from the years of 1992-2013. Many people have claimed that she talks "like a man," and this article examines that theory. In the article Jennifer J. Jones proves how Hillary went to more of a masculine linguistic approach to a more feministic approach in 2007. There are many reasons for these changes that are reflected in this article. [Published on 08-17-2016]
"Token Black Woman" -Issa Rae
This gif comes from an episode of the show "Insecure" that aired recently on HBO. The show is based on Issa Rae, an African American woman, trying to navigate her way through her 20's. Rae works for a non profit called "We Got Ya'll," which helps children of color from low income communities to be successful in school. The non-profit was created by a white woman and Rae is the only black woman working there. Rae refers to herself as the "token black woman." This gif shows a white co-worker asking Rae the meaning of "on fleek." Her co-worker is assuming that because Rae is black, that she is familiar with this language. This is an example of her co-worker's language ideologies. Unfortunately for her co-worker, due to indirect indexicality, making this assumption actually makes her appear racist. Rae spoke about the show, saying that the series will examine "the complexities of 'blackness' and the reality that you can’t escape being black." Rae also said, in regards to the potential mainstream reaction to the series: "We’re just trying to convey that people of color are relatable. This is not a hood story. This is about regular people living life."
“Things You Do Online That’d Be Creepy In Real Life”Play video
This video draws attention to how social media has gone further than just coining new slang terms; it has created a new language with entirely different governing rules. It points out the significant differences in styles of communication between face-to-face contact and social media interactions. The most striking examples are the performative declarations that would seem strange if spoken in front of a live audience. Here we see just how easily we take for granted this major shift in our everyday life.
Could your language affect your ability to save money?
Amazing Ted Talk by Keith Chen illustrating how "language" can help a person's ability to save money! EVERYONE should see this. It also gives a really good illustration on how different languages force you to say different things. [Published on 06-01-2012]
The Art of the Code Switch: Obama Morphs for his Audience Just Like You Do.
Obama reflects on a conversation he remembers hearing his dad have with a native from Alabama. He recalls him using words such as "aint" "warsh" instead of wash and so forth. Even his fathers body language changed. Upon asking him, he tells his son that "I wasn't always a lawyer who went to sleep at his white friends bakehouse, son." [Published on 10-03-2012]
How to Speak HipPlay video
This is the intro to a 13 part "album" instructing listeners on how to speak and understand "hip" language. Those who want to appear "cool" to this subculture that includes hipsters, juvenile delinquents, jazz musicians, etc.
Jon Stewart - Thank Donald TrumpPlay video
Jon Stewart mocks the 'inspiration' of new Latino voters for Donald Trump's run for presidency.
Code Switching, Mock Spanish, and Kevin HartPlay video
Kevin Hart is explaining what it's like to be in prison. He takes on numerous different forms and voices to show the different type of people in prison.
The Foreigner's Guide to Irish AccentsPlay video
Video shows how tightly a language can be held to a very small geographic region, even when in close proximity to others of a different dialect.
Students Learn to "Toggle" Between Dialects
This article is about the role code-switching plays in the success of low income students. Students that engage in code-switching tend to achieve more academically than students that do not code-switch.
Family Guy StereotypesPlay video
This video is a combination of stereotypes that have aired on family guy over the years. Many of these stereotypes have to do with race and language in society today.
Key & Peele - Obama's Anger Translator - Meet LutherPlay video
In this video clip of Key & Peele, Peele's Obama is a very mild-mannered character who calmly addresses his audience, and Key's Luther interrupts Obama's speech to represent Obama's inner anger.
Hillary Clinton and her Evolving AccentPlay video
Hillary Clinton demonstrates styleshifting during her many years in public life.
Dating a LatinaPlay video
Dating a Latina: Perception vs Reality. This video is funny, some may be able to relate to it. This video exhibits Spanish, American English, and Code Switching.
President Obama - HispanderingPlay video
In Obama's Cinco de Mayo speech it is clear that hispandering is taking place. He invited a crowd of what appeared to be people of hispanic background. What Obama is speaking about is clear, he wants immigration laws and reform to continuously be adjusted and bettered. Each time Obama said the term 'tequila' he changed the way he said it to sound more hispanic and the crowd went nuts so he continued to say it to please the people there. He used code-switching to his advantage in this speech.
The "White Voice" of Radio
This clip points out the style-shifting of the particular speaker, and attributes it to race, performativity, and accommodation to his audience. [Published on 02-02-2015]
india vs mexicoPlay video
This clip shows how different countries or races think or talk about other countries. The same thing he says here Americans typically say about Mexico.
The Linguistics of YouTube Voice
This article focuses on YouTube stars, and how they capture a viewer's attention by changing their speech and accommodating to their audience. [Published on 12-07-2015]
Key & Peele - White-Sounding Black GuysPlay video
Key and Peele talk about their very intentional use of AAE features in both real life and comedy. This ties in perfect for language ideology because it turns out to be much more than just language. It's the cultural system of ideas about social and linguistic relationships.
3 Ways To Speak English
This TedTalk features Jamila Lyiscott, who describes the "three Englishes" she speaks on a daily basis, which is determined by her surrounding environment and who she is with. Her detailed breakdown of the different "tongues" she speaks shows the correlation between language, culture, and race, as well as how society and culture effect language acquisition/usage as a reflection of widely held language ideologies. [Published on 02-01-2014]
Beyonce - FormationPlay video
In this song and music video, Beyonce addresses stereotypes of the African-American community and uses language and style-shifting to play on how the public perceives wealthy black individuals such as herself and her family. She also discusses her upbringing in the deep south and mentions how her family's "negro" and "Creole" heritages combine.
Black Jeopardy--SNLPlay video
CW for a brief reference to domestic abuse. One in a series, this sketch imagines a black version of Jeopardy! with categories such as "It's Been a Minute" and "White People." The episode features a black Alex Trebek (Kenan Thompson), two black contestants (Jay Pharaoh and Sasheer Zamata), and a white professor of African American Studies (Louis C.K.). Linguistically the video is interesting because, though exploiting common stereotypes of the African American community, it does so using phonologically and morphosyntactically authentic AAE (switching at times into a more vernacular style).
Diphthongal TerryPlay video
Here, Terry is talking to his boss, and therefore produces more diphthongal /ai/s than his more casual speech.
Obama's Eulogy of Reverend PinckneyPlay video
This is an excerpt of the eulogy for Reverend Clementa Pinckney delivered by President Obama after the Charleston shooting at the Emanuel AME Church. He makes strategic use of preaching style to establish a rapport and sense of belonging with a black audience in a religious setting.
Tracking Hillary Clinton's use of every American accent east of the Mississippi
A series of clips that demonstrate Hillary Clinton's performance of some varieties of American English, particularly Southern English and Northern Cities English (her native variety) [Published on 05-01-2015]
When Politicians Lose Their Accents
Clip from All Things Considered discussing the way in which politicians, such as those currently running for president, tend to shift accents depending on audience/context. One of the politicians the clip mentions is governor of Wisconsin, Scott Walker, who has allegedly traded his "Wisconsin twang" for a more standard way of speaking in order to appeal to the nation at large. [Published on 04-18-2015]
Can "Y'all" Mean Just One Person?
This blog post explores the idea of the singular "y'all". The post entertains the idea that this form of "y'all" comes from a style-shift used around non-Southerners in an attempt to differentiate themselves and assert their identity (similar to Kara's Jersey vowels being more commonly heard outside of Jersey). [Published on 10-03-2014]
Hatred of the word "moist": voluntary or involuntary?Play video
Since the How I Met Your Mother character, Lily's hatred of the word “moist” was revealed in 2007, I have encountered lots of people who also hate the word. Whether this was a voluntary choice is unclear. I do know of a few people who began hating it after seeing this episode of the show. Is this purely an expression of speaker agency discussed in the speaker design model? Are they modeling their linguistic likes and dislikes after Lily or did she just bring the so-called gross word to everyone’s attention? What is it about the word that makes people find it so distasteful? Dane Cook seems to think the dislike is related to gender. Check out this video of his stand-up bit about women hating the word: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1nRMmrY_Qh4
Sounding gay, punk, or jock: What language says about your social group
Sociolinguist Doug Bigham discusses the use of linguistic resources in the construction of style, focusing on the construction of a gay style. [Published on 11-24-2014]
Post-creole continuum chart
So the article itself we've mostly covered, but the included chart is a great and clear example of the variety that can exists within a language that can potentially be explained as various levels of "decreolization" or varieties that have always existed with different features of the superstrate. [Published on 09-01-2014]
XKCD: Appropriate Term
A XKCD comic highlighting the formality continuum of style-shifting.
Having Trouble Being BlackPlay video
Two African American men employ code-switching while making a video, prompting one to accuse the other acting white.
NPR: Code-swtiching: Are we all guilty?
A 2010 NPR piece about the criticism of President Obama's "negro dialect," with a broader discussing of both style-shifting and code-switching.
NPR: Psychology Behind the Sudden Southern Drawl
A 2006 piece on NPR about Bill Clinton's use of a heavier Southern accent in a moment of anger, with guest Walt Wolfram, who explains the phenomenon of style-shifting.
(r) in New York City English(Enlarge image)
The classic graph from Labov (1966) showing stratification by socioeconomic class and speaker style for coda r vocalization in New York City English