Deviations in English Consonants in the Speakers of Yousafzai Pashto


  • Ayyaz Mahmood Assistant Professor, Department of English, NUML, Islamabad


This article aims to explore the way/s English consonant sounds are produced by the Yousafzai Pashto speaking people of Pakistan. Language changes horizantally (regionllay) and vertically (socially) implying that people are linguistically different from one another, case to case. In addition to the region and social class, one’s mother tongue seems to play a significant part in the production of the sounds of the target language (Brière 1966). If there is conformity between the first and the second/foreign language, it entails a carryover effect in the form of a positive transfer of L1 speech habits into the L2 and in a case otherwise, the transfer may be negative. In other words, similarity between a two languages can an asset (a facility) and dissimilarity a liability (hurdle) for foreign learners. English is taught as a compulsory subject in Pakistan and due to the existence of multiple regional languages, spoken as mother tongues by different people; there emerge multiple sub-varieties of the kind of English spoken in the country. The present article studies English consonants of the specific sub-variety spoken by the Yousafzai Pashto speakers which shares features with Pakistani English specifically, and the RP (Received Pronunciation) in general. In the study fifty graduates participated, who pronounced a wordlist containing the consonants. The data was transcribed for analysis to identify the distinct features. Praat software was used to facilitate further clarity to the study.