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    #1

    Is the /ɑ/ in "Whata" reduced to /ʌ/?

    I know that the most precise pronunciation of the word, "What", is /ɑ/, but I think
    when American people speak fast, their whats all sound like WUT(/ʌ/ to me.
    For example, what's up sounds like like wutsup. Also, becAUse's au is transcribed
    /ɔ/ or /ɑ/ (if you are cot caught merged), but sounds like to me that it is reduced to
    /ʌ/ or a schwa. I personally pronounce because as bɪˋkəz when I speak at normal speed and not fully articulate it.
    So if it is reduced, do you guys reduce it to a schwa like me or is it better reduced to /ʌ/?
    Thanks a lot in advance.

  1. Piscean's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Is the /ɑ/ in "Whata" reduced to /ʌ/?

    Welcome to the forum, Hexuan Xiao.

    I'm afraid you'll have to accept that there is no absolutely correct ways of pronouncing these words. The way we pronounce them depends, among other things, on the dialect we speak and on the stress we add to syllables in any particular accent.

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    #3

    Re: Is the /ɑ/ in "Whata" reduced to /ʌ/?

    I'm from southwest Ohio, where I and many other people use Appalachian-influenced pronunciations. (We're in an accent boundary region, so people who grew up across the street from one another may speak quite differently.)

    I use different vowels in cot and caught, but I use a schwa in what and because. I do often aspirate the /wh/ in what.
    I am not a teacher.

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