West-Central Thailand Pwo Karen Phonology

Date
2018-06-01
Authors
Audra Phillips
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11
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1
Starting Page
47
Ending Page
62
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Abstract
West-Central Thailand Pwo Karen (Karenic, Tibeto-Burman) is one of several mutually unintelligible varieties of Pwo Karen found in Myanmar and Thailand. This paper represents an updated version of a phonological description (Phillips 2000). The study includes a comparison of the phonologies of Burmese Eastern Pwo Karen (Hpa-an and Tavoy) and the Thailand Pwo Karen varieties, West-Central Thailand Pwo Karen and Northern Pwo Karen. While the consonant inventories are similar, the vowel inventories exhibit diphthongization of some nasalized vowels. Also, some former nasalized vowels have lost their nasalization. This denasalization is most pronounced in the Burmese Eastern Pwo Karen varieties. As well, these varieties have either lost the two glottalized tones, or are in the process of losing them, while this process has only begun in West-Central Thailand Pwo Karen. In contrast, all six tones are present in Northern Pwo Karen.
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Karenic, Pwo Karen, phonology, nasalization, diphthongization, denasalization
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16 pages
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