Dr Grant Howie

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About me

DipLang Spanish (Otago, 2010)
BA (Hons.) Linguistics (1st, Otago. 2010)
PhD Linguistics (Otago, 2018)

Area of expertise

My main research interests lie in how identity (either individual or as a speech community) influences the language speakers use, particularly in relation to their phonological systems. My doctoral research (and forthcoming paper) looked at the English dialects of Afrikaans speakers in NZ and how changes in their self-identity manifested in their spoken English post-relocation. 

Aside from identity and pronunciation, I am also interested in language revitalisation and maintenance. As a PhD student, I was able to work with my primary supervisor on parent opinion and language maintenance strategies for Ju|'hoan, !Xun and other minority languages in Namibia and South Africa. I wish to continue in this field looking at other minority languages and the policies and parent opinions around them. 

Currently, I am heading the construction of the LangVar database for BCL: a bank of recorded data from students, staff and people outside the university in Bristol to measure various aspects of the Bristolian accent. Looking firstly at rhoticity and vowel changes, and what influences might cause a change in the pronunciation of its speech community.


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