Non-vibrant bilingual rhotics in a Creole-Spanish Contact Scenario

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Falcon Restrepo-Ramos

Abstract

This sociolinguistic study examines the non-vibrant rhotic realizations produced in a bilingual Spanish variety spoken by Creole-Spanish speakers in the Archipelago of San Andres, Colombia. These bilingual rhotic realizations were compared with the languages in contact, the monolingual varieties, Spanish and Creole, in terms of the best acoustic predictors for discriminating between linguistic groups. A discriminant function analysis selected segmental duration and formant frequencies (F3 and F2) as the acoustic correlates with the best predicting capabilities. These acoustic predictors extracted from zero-occlusion rhotics were further contrasted between varieties revealing that the bilingual Spanish is placed in an intermediate position between the monolingual Spanish and Creole. These findings corroborate the interlanguage status of the bilingual variety and suggests that specific realizations seem to converge with the languages in contact. A discussion ensues on the nature of non-vibrant rhotic productions across varieties and the potential outcomes of contact within specific groups in the bilingual population.

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