Australian vs New Zealand English

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Gormur
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Australian vs New Zealand English

Postby Gormur » 2005-11-16, 2:45

What are some of the differences between Aussie and Kiwi English? (If those are offensive terms, then I apologise). Are the differences comparable to Canadian and General American English?

If anyone has some recordings or links to local media, that would be great. I'm mainly interested in New Zealand English as I haven't had much opportunity to hear it.

Thanks in advance.

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Re: Australian vs New Zealand English

Postby Kirk » 2005-11-16, 5:23

Gormur wrote:What are some of the differences between Aussie and Kiwi English? (If those are offensive terms, then I apologise). Are the differences comparable to Canadian and General American English?

If anyone has some recordings or links to local media, that would be great. I'm mainly interested in New Zealand English as I haven't had much opportunity to hear it.

Thanks in advance.


Here's a good start

In terms of phonology, there are a few interesting phenomena which are uniquely part of New Zealand English (and not Australian English). Two of the most famous are the backing and centralizing of /ɪ/ to /ə/, resulting in the Australian claim that New Zealanders talk about "fush and chups." Conversely, New Zealanders claim Australians speak of "feesh and cheeps" since Australian /ɪ/ may actually be closer to /i/ in many cases. Another famous phenomenon in NZE which doesn't occur in AuE is the merger of the sounds /eə/ and /ɪə/, so speakers who merge them have homophonous pairs like "chair"/"cheer" or "bear"/"beer." Apparently not all NZE speakers do this (any comments from NZE speakers here?) but it's noteworthy in that it doesn't occur in Australia.

There are a lot of other interesting things that the wikipedia article briefly delves into.
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Postby MikeL » 2005-11-16, 9:16

Kirk, you have identified the two most important phonetic differences between AuE and NZE. The "fish and chips" test is usually decisive in discriminating between the two. I'm pretty sure that this difference has existed for quite some time. On the other hand the merger of the 2 phonemes represented by "beer" and "bear" in NZE is, I think, comparatively recent. I came from Australia in the sixties and at the time wasn't aware of the phenomenon - I think I would have noticed it. What was immediately noticeable and is still a point of difference is the vowel in words like "dance" - NZE has the same vowel as British RP while most Australians (although not all) pronounce it with the American vowel. In parts of the South Island the 'r' is rolled lightly (Scots influence) - I have never heard this in Australia. I believe that some of the phonetic differences between AuE and NZE can be accounted for by the quite different colonial histories, in particular the regional and social origins of emigrants from Britain.
It should be remembered also that there are quite considerable lexical differences, although many traditional terms are now confined to the older generation. There are dictionaries of AuE and NZE which might be of interest to specialists.

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Postby Kirk » 2005-11-16, 9:41

MikeL wrote:Kirk, you have identified the two most important phonetic differences between AuE and NZE. The "fish and chips" test is usually decisive in discriminating between the two. I'm pretty sure that this difference has existed for quite some time. On the other hand the merger of the 2 phonemes represented by "beer" and "bear" in NZE is, I think, comparatively recent. I came from Australia in the sixties and at the time wasn't aware of the phenomenon - I think I would have noticed it. What was immediately noticeable and is still a point of difference is the vowel in words like "dance" - NZE has the same vowel as British RP while most Australians (although not all) pronounce it with the American vowel.


Also the Northern English one since their /a/ or /æ/ never went to [ɑ] either :)

MikeL wrote:In parts of the South Island the 'r' is rolled lightly (Scots influence) - I have never heard this in Australia. I believe that some of the phonetic differences between AuE and NZE can be accounted for by the quite different colonial histories, in particular the regional and social origins of emigrants from Britain.
It should be remembered also that there are quite considerable lexical differences, although many traditional terms are now confined to the older generation. There are dictionaries of AuE and NZE which might be of interest to specialists.


Yes I've read that some of the southern dialects in New Zealand are even rhotic, as a result of the Scottish influence.
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'Twas brillig, and the slithy toves did gyre and gimble in the wabe.

I eat prescriptivists for breakfast.

maɪ nemz kʰɜ˞kʰ n̩ aɪ laɪk̚ fɨˈnɛ̞ɾɪ̞ks

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Postby Ariki » 2005-11-16, 21:49

I personally can't tell too much difference, except that Australian men speak with a much higher pitch.

Also, NZ English has a lot more Māori vocabulary in it (even if it is mispronounced).

To give you an idea...

aroha
whānau
kai
kiwi
haere mai
whare nui
marae
pohutukawa
kumara
taro
kia ora
Aotearoa
whare
taonga
mana (however, the exact meaning is not used in English)
tutae
tiko
waiata
ringa
tinana
hinengaro
tapa whā
pōrangi
ūpokokōhua
hine
tama
matua
whaea / whae
waka
iwi
Ngaire (mispronounced as 'Ny-ree')
tāngata whenua
Haka
Kapa Haka
wahine
tāne
wai
whenua
moana
ika
manu
Māori (as a name only, mispronounced as 'maowree')

That's not all of the words either. The usage of the words depends on how much they interact with Māori.
Last edited by Ariki on 2005-11-16, 21:58, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Ariki » 2005-11-16, 21:53

"chair"/"cheer" or "bear"/"beer."


No one in my family here merges the two. They are both distinct from each other.

Also none of them say 'fush and chups' (it's between the Australian pronunciation and the New Zealand one).

The part of my family that don't try to imitate the pākehā speakers of English don't have much of a typical NZE accent. Rather, they have one that is based on an actual Māori accent (because, the accent for speaking Māori is quite similar to the accents used to speak other Pacific Island languages, most noticeably Tahitian and Rarotongan).

And I do hate it when I speak to someone who speaks Māori who says -

ka tautoko au i a koe - where the 'au' is pronounced as English 'oh'. That's bad pronunciation, and it makes my ears bleed when I hear it. It sounds way too English in pronunciation, and it shows that persons inability to make the 'au' diphthong in Māori. The same happens with 'ou', I really hate it in songs or poetry where they use 'ou' and 'au' as rhyming sounds like this -

he tangata hou ahau e

If they were the exact same sound, then they'd be written the same. No other Polynesian language has those two diphthongs as rhyming, and no Polynesian language pronunces 'oh' at all. My grandmother never did, and she could tell if you were a native speaker or not by your accent.

And the reason why I share this is because - this is not a natural change with in the language at all (because the people who pronunce it like this are second language learners).
Linguicide IS genocide. :)

He ingoa ōpaki a Riki; he ingoa ōkawa a Ariki.

Riki is an informal name; Ariki is a formal name.

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Re: Australian vs New Zealand English

Postby Resilience » 2005-12-15, 19:03

Gormur wrote:What are some of the differences between Aussie and Kiwi English? (If those are offensive terms, then I apologise).


No more offensive than Canuck and Yankee!

Gormur wrote:Are the differences comparable to Canadian and General American English?


I agree with riki, even we find it difficult to distinguish between ourselves. If it wasn't for the "fush and chups" we probably wouldn't be able to at all.

In the defense of New Zealanders though, "fush and chups" is just as much of an exaggeration as Canadian "aboot".

Gormur wrote:I'm mainly interested in New Zealand English as I haven't had much opportunity to hear it.


A good example is the host of "The Amazing Race".

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Re: Australian vs New Zealand English

Postby Pips » 2005-12-15, 19:59

Resilience wrote:
Gormur wrote:I'm mainly interested in New Zealand English as I haven't had much opportunity to hear it.


A good example is the host of "The Amazing Race".


But he (Phil Keoghan) really puts on an American accent on that show - most people probably wouldn't even know where he is from originally. The only time I can detect an accent is at the end of each show when he says "Stay tuned (very palatal; almost sounds like 'chyuned') for scenes from our next episode."

I love The Amazing Race. :D
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Re: Australian vs New Zealand English

Postby Gormur » 2005-12-15, 20:05

Resilience wrote:Canuck and Yankee


Those terms are joke terms over here, for the most part. :wink:

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Re: Australian vs New Zealand English

Postby Resilience » 2005-12-15, 20:57

Pips wrote:
Resilience wrote:
Gormur wrote:I'm mainly interested in New Zealand English as I haven't had much opportunity to hear it.


A good example is the host of "The Amazing Race".


But he (Phil Keoghan) really puts on an American accent on that show - most people probably wouldn't even know where he is from originally. The only time I can detect an accent is at the end of each show when he says "Stay tuned (very palatal; almost sounds like 'chyuned') for scenes from our next episode."

I love The Amazing Race. :D


It was the only example I could think of. :wink:

Gormur wrote:Those terms are joke terms over here, for the most part. ;)


Oh! It must be because they named a (baseball?) team Yankee, I thought it was semi-official.

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Postby clint » 2005-12-15, 21:19

Lol.. Not all Kiwi's say "fush and chups".. I even get a bit of a shock when I here a Kiwi pronounce it like that..

Most say Fish and Chips where the sound of I is sounded in the same manner as J "jih".

Australian's do say Feesh and Cheeps but it's more prominent in the non-metropolitan areas..

Another thing about NZE that you may find interesting is words that end in R. Like car. Mainly North Islanders drop the R. So it's like Cah (short). Australian's would pronounce it Caah with a US 'A' pronounciation. I've heard words like the number 4 pronounced fawah but that may be to laziness.

And words like tuned, tuna often pronounced as a ch sound. But again that may be due to laziness in pronounciation.

p.s. Film Director (LOTR, King Kong) - Peter Jackson has a good kiwi accent. Slightly Wellingtonian in sound. www.stuff.co.nz/videos.html

p.p.s. you can also try www.tvnz.co.nz for news footage to hear kiwi accents. or www.xtra.co.nz
I can't guarantee that you'll get to here some, as I haven't actually checked any out. I guess cos I don't need to as I live here and can watch it live. But have fun!
Last edited by clint on 2005-12-15, 23:40, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Ariki » 2005-12-15, 22:46

please, watch, you'll be amazed at how we seemingly intelligibly communicate with each other ;)

Watch 'The Whale Rider', 'Once Were Warriors', 'What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted' or 'Footrot Flats' if you want some examples of NZ English :)

Or try watching 'The Piano' (???). Watching NZ Border Control is quite funny hehehe
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Re: Australian vs New Zealand English

Postby Stan » 2005-12-15, 23:58

Pips wrote:
Resilience wrote:
Gormur wrote:I'm mainly interested in New Zealand English as I haven't had much opportunity to hear it.


A good example is the host of "The Amazing Race".


But he (Phil Keoghan) really puts on an American accent on that show - most people probably wouldn't even know where he is from originally. The only time I can detect an accent is at the end of each show when he says "Stay tuned (very palatal; almost sounds like 'chyuned') for scenes from our next episode."

I love The Amazing Race. :D


He's from New Zealand? :shock: he sounded to me like an American, from the Northeast :oops:

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Postby Ariki » 2005-12-16, 0:30

His accent for the show is American though
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Postby Kirk » 2005-12-16, 1:25

Of course "fush and chups" is an exaggeration and a jocular spelling, but it is based on an actual phenomenon, much like Canadian "aboot." They're just poor "faux-phonetic" spellings. New Zealand /ɪ/ does tend to be more backed and centralized than other varieties of English have there, much as Australian /ɪ/ tends to be fronter and tenser, approaching /i/, at least as compared to other English varieties.

Canadian "about" obeys Canadian Raising, which raises /aʊ/ and /aɪ/ to centralized [əʊ] and [əɪ], respectively, before unvoiced stops. Thus, it applies to "about" which has [əˈbəʊt]. Compare this to near-minimal pair "avowed" [əˈvaʊːd]. Not all Canadians have Canadian Raising, tho many do. Also, many Americans in the northern US have it as well. Anyway, it's certainly never "aboot," which would imply *[əˈbut], which is unattested as far as I know.
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'Twas brillig, and the slithy toves did gyre and gimble in the wabe.

I eat prescriptivists for breakfast.

maɪ nemz kʰɜ˞kʰ n̩ aɪ laɪk̚ fɨˈnɛ̞ɾɪ̞ks

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Postby clint » 2005-12-16, 1:59

But there actually are some Kiwi's that say fush and chups.. I think they are the more rural european kiwi's. Most Maori's and like Pacific Islanders of NZ have their own NZised accents too. As do the Chinese/Asians of NZ that have been here for several generations. Not quite a typical Kiwi accent but more a Kiwi Asian accent. (think of the mantis chick in the first season of bro'town) Which is still a cool accent.

amoeba

Postby amoeba » 2005-12-16, 4:46

I have heard that New Zealand English is the only form of English that doesn't distinguish the word 'woman' from 'women' - they sound exactly the same.

I'm not 100% sure it's correct, though.

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Postby clint » 2005-12-16, 18:23

amoeba wrote:I have heard that New Zealand English is the only form of English that doesn't distinguish the word 'woman' from 'women' - they sound exactly the same.

I'm not 100% sure it's correct, though.
The rumours are true! It cracks me up all the time.. Me not being an original NZE speaker it was one of the first things I noticed. They actually are pronounced differently but most people that don't speak NZE don't notice the subtle difference. The a and e are pronounced but the o remains the same as pronounced in woman. women is pronounced more like womin with the wo pronounced the same as in woman.

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Postby Stan » 2005-12-16, 20:10

amoeba wrote:I have heard that New Zealand English is the only form of English that doesn't distinguish the word 'woman' from 'women' - they sound exactly the same.

I'm not 100% sure it's correct, though.


I distinguish them

woman - the o is a schwa
women - the o is pronounced like an short i like in "bit"

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Postby Ariki » 2005-12-17, 7:51

I can hear the distinction (but I don't speak NZ English natively). But even though I can hear the distinction there's not that much of a distinction hence why people think that both sound the same (which is quite understandable)
Linguicide IS genocide. :)

He ingoa ōpaki a Riki; he ingoa ōkawa a Ariki.

Riki is an informal name; Ariki is a formal name.


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