The Weekly Newsletter of MIT Linguistics

Phonology circle 11/19 - Jonah Katz

This week’s Phonology Circle presentation is by Jonah Katz.

Title: Phonetic similarity in an English hip-hop corpus Time: Wed 11/12, 5pm, 32-D831

In this talk, I present preliminary results from a corpus study of hip-hop. Previous studies on half-rhyme in Romanian poetry (Steriade 2003) and Japanese hip-hop and imperfect puns (Kawahara 2007, 2008) have established that the frequency of specific imperfect rhymes varies with the phonetic distance between the correspondents involved in the rhyme. The current study extends that finding to English hip-hop. The complex nature of the data poses special challenges for data extraction and analysis. I’ll discuss in some detail how the corpus was constructed and what the proper statistical methods are for testing generalizations about half-rhymes.