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Laterals in Estonian Swedish

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Afra Pujol i Campeny.

Swedish was spoken in Estonia as a result of settlement from Sweden and from Finland starting around the 12th century. A small, but relatively stable, Swedish-speaking population survived in some western coastal areas of and islands off Estonia until the second world war, when the prospect of Russian re-occupation led the majority of ethnic Swedes to accept an offer of refuge in Sweden. Today, the speakers are mostly over 80, and in Stockholm (though a handful remain in Estonia). There is no prospect of the dialect surviving beyond their lifespan. This talk will introduce some grammatical features of the dialect in general, before focusing on phonology and the somewhat unusual liquid system. A detail analysis will be given of the voiceless lateral which Estonian Swedish shares with very few other Swedish dialects. The voiceless lateral will be compared acoustically with those of Welsh and Icelandic.

This talk is part of the Cambridge Endangered Languages and Cultures Group series.

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