The work reported here explores the issue of Australian English accent broadness, past and present, through a diachronic acoustic analysis of the vowel,drawing on archival data collected by Mitchell and Delbridge in the late 1950s and early 1960s and more recent data from the Australian Voices project. Data from 168 female speakers from the Mitchell and Delbridge survey and 70 female speakers from the Australian Voices project were examined. All were from Sydney's North and North West and represented the Government, Catholic and Independent school systems. A number of acoustic measurements were employed to identify variation and change associated with this vowel extracted from a single word in a sentence reading task. In particular, we were interested in the degree of onglide, a feature of that is pervasive in Australian English. We provide empirical evidence showing that the broadness continuum has contracted by demonstrating that variation in the degree of onglide for has changed in interesting ways for girls from three different school systems. © 2014 The Australian Linguistic Society.
Cox, F., Palethorpe, S., & Bentink, S. (2014). Phonetic archaeology and 50 years of change to Australian english. Australian Journal of Linguistics, 34(1), 50-75. https://doi.org/10.1080/07268602.2014.875455