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    #1

    Japanese mispronouncing words that end in N

    I have a friend who can't distinguish the sound of N from NG. Example, he pronounces the words sun and sung the same way. I kept on telling him they're different but he can't seem to pronounce them right. How can I help him?

    Thanks. We tried searching the net but did not find any. Most helps are for the sounds of F and P, etc.

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Japanese mispronouncing words that end in N

    Ask your friend to position the tongue as for a /g/, and the hum. While still humming, s/he should flatten the tongue so that there is no closure between the tongue and the hard palate.Then repeat the change as long as s/he has breath:

    /ŋŋŋŋŋŋnnnnnnŋŋŋŋŋŋnnnnnnŋŋŋŋŋŋŋnnnnnn.../

    b

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    #3

    Re: Japanese mispronouncing words that end in N

    Tell him it's the n in 南極/nankyoku [naŋkʲokɯ]

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    #4

    Re: Japanese mispronouncing words that end in N

    Quote Originally Posted by thatone View Post
    Tell him it's the n in 南極/nankyoku [naŋkʲokɯ]
    ...But the problem is that these two sounds are allophonic to him/her. Pointing to his/her own language isn't going to help. It's the same as telling an English speaker that the Welsh lateral flap at the beginning of a word is the same as what follows the [k] in 'clan' - the flap is an allophone of the /l/ phoneme. But he'll still find it impossible to divorce the flap from the initial consonant; so he'll still mispronounce 'Llandudno' as if it were 'Clandudno'.

    b

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    #5

    Re: Japanese mispronouncing words that end in N

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    ...But the problem is that these two sounds are allophonic to him/her. Pointing to his/her own language isn't going to help. It's the same as telling an English speaker that the Welsh lateral flap at the beginning of a word is the same as what follows the [k] in 'clan' - the flap is an allophone of the /l/ phoneme. But he'll still find it impossible to divorce the flap from the initial consonant; so he'll still mispronounce 'Llandudno' as if it were 'Clandudno'.

    b
    I think it depends on the person and the sound in question. At least that's how I learned /ŋ/, so it's worth a shot.

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