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  1. #1
    keannu's Avatar
    keannu is offline Key Member
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    Default How to pronounce [ʌ] in "Cut"?

    HOw do you pronounce /ʌ/ as in cut, hut, gut, suck?
    Do you pronounce /ə/ as in agenda, alive, address first and make a quick sudden change to /ɑ/ as in got, god to make this sound?
    Can you notice your lip and mouth change?
    This ʌ sound doesn't exist in many languages, so many foreigners are having a hard time understanding it.
    As far as I know, to make /ʌ/ sound, you make your lip shape same as /ə/ and push air like when you make /ɑ/ sound. It's like a small /ɑ/. Am I right?

    I heard a theory that you shoud make a quick change from /ə/ to /ɑ/ with a lightening speed, so do you ever make a mouth shape change for this sound or just push at /ə/ shape?

    Your advice will be highly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: How to pronounce [ʌ] in "Cut"?

    My mouth opens wider to say /ʌ/

  3. #3
    thatone is offline Member
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    Default Re: How to pronounce [ʌ] in "Cut"?

    The easiest way for a non-native speaker to say /ʌ/ would be to try to say something like /ɑ/ while the mouth is in the /ə/ position. It's important note though that there is a lot of variance among dialects.

    First of all, while conventionally used to represent the standard vowel of words like cut and nut, the /ʌ/ vowel is actually usually found only in some dialects, namely Newfoundland and Philadelphia. [1]

    In in RP (and Californian English) it's actually often a central near-open vowel, /ɐ/[2], while in southern American dialects it sounds like
    /ɜ/[3], the vowel in British English bird /bɜ:d/ or /ɘ/, which is very close to /ə/[4].

    In the American Inland North dialect it's more backed and sounds like trying to say /ɔ/ while the mouth is in a /ə/ position.

    [1]-Open-mid back unrounded vowel - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    [2]-Near-open central vowel - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    [3]-Open-mid central unrounded vowel - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    [4]-Close-mid central unrounded vowel - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

  4. #4
    keannu's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to pronounce [ʌ] in "Cut"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    My mouth opens wider to say /ʌ/
    Thank you, but your explanation is not enough for me to understand, could you be more specific?
    Last edited by keannu; 12-Jan-2011 at 21:35.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: How to pronounce [ʌ] in "Cut"?

    The short vowel RP /ʌ / is articulated with a considerable separation of the jaws and with the lips neutrally open; the centre of the tongue (or a part slightly in advance of centre) is raised just above the fully open position, no contact being made between the tongue and the upper molars. Gimsons Pronunciation of English (Revised by Alan Cruttenden).

    BBC Learning English | Pronunciation Tips

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