Gazetteer of Southern Vowels

This site was created to allow you to interact with data extracted from the Digital Archive of Southern Speech. The site is still undergoing active development. Please report bugs, suggestions, or comments to Joey Stanley at joeystan@uga.edu.

Where do the data come from?

The Digital Archive of the Southern Speech (DASS) is an audio corpus of semi-spontaneous linguistic atlas interviews (Kretzschmar et al. 2013) derived from the Linguistic Atlas of the Gulf States (Pederson et al. 1986). It contains speech from 64 natives (34 men and 30 women, born 1886–1965) of 8 Southern US states. This sample contains a mixture of ethnicities, social classes, education levels, and ages.

DASS is currently undergoing transcription, forced alignment, and acoustic analysis (see Renwick et al. 2017 and Olsen et al. 2017). We use DARLA for forced alignment and a modified version of FAVE for formant extraction. Specifically, we have removed all filters from FAVE so that all vowel tokens, whether they be from unstressed syllables or stopwords, are included here. Currently, this site displays 732,212 vowel tokens from 53 speakers.

The corpus can be licensed from the Linguistic Data Consortium, while the Linguistic Atlas Project hosts it via mp3s, speaker biographies, and more.

What does this site do?

Currently, the site has four main pages:

  • Vowel Plot Comparison: On this page, you can subset the DASS data by many demographic attributes and view the corresponding speakers' vowel tokens plotted in F1, F2 space. You can also subset by stress, vowel, word, and following consonant and choose what normalization technique (if any), filtering, and transcription system should be used. The plots are extremely customizable and you can change how the data is displayed. Two graphs are included on this page to—given a large enough screen size—facilitate side-by-side comparison of subgroups. Below each graph are tables that give basic summaries of the speakers and the vowels selected.
  • Interactive Vowel Plot: Here you can focus on specific portions of individual speakers' vowel space and see words rather than just points. If you click on the plot itself, a table at the top will display the five points nearest to where you clicked, showing you exact formant measurements, the word, and the speaker associated with that observation.
  • Point Pattern Analysis: This is an alternative way of viewing the vowel space, pioneered by Kretzschmar. On this page, you can again subset the data the same as on the other two pages and see a scatterplot in F1, F2 space. The underlaid grid indicates how many observations lie in each cell, with the number of rows and columns in the grid controllable by the user. Below the plot is a chart of the distribution of the grids, plotted in decreasing order of density. The resulting chart follows an Asymptotic Curve (or simply, "A-Curve").
  • Speaker Info: The speaker info page allows you to explore the metadata and distribution of speakers in DASS. The map has some flexibility as to how various demographic categories are displayed.

New content is being added regularly, so check back soon for additional features.

How is this site powered?

This site is built in Shiny, a web application framework for R. With Shiny, users can utilize the computational power of the R programming language without having to learn R or install it to their computers. This is all bundled up and put on the web to allow for the interactive capabilities of web browsers. See the bottom of this page for a list of specific packages that are used to process this data and create this site.

How is this project funded?

This research is supported by: NSF BCS #1625680 to co-PIs Kretzschmar and Renwick, the University of Georgia Graduate School, and the American Dialect Society.

Who is involved?

The PIs for this project are William Kretzschmar and Margaret E. L. Renwick, of the University of Georgia. Our team has several student researchers including Mike Olsen, Rachel Olsen, and Joey Stanley. We also have several dozen undergraduate student workers, funded by ADS or NSF, that do most of the transcribing work.

Contact information

For more information, please contact Joey Stanley at joeystan@uga.edu.

How can I cite this resource?

If you use or refer to this website, you must cite the Gazetteer of Southern Vowels as follows:

  • Stanley, Joseph A., Margaret E. L. Renwick, William A. Kretzschmar Jr., Rachel M. Olsen, & Michael Olsen. (2018). “The Gazetteer of Southern Vowels.” The American Dialect Society Annual Meeting. Salt Lake City, UT.

Bibliography

The following is an ongoing list of research that is directly related to DASS or utilizes its data.

Publications (alphabetical)

  • Kretzschmar, William A., Paulina Bounds, Jacqueline Hettel, Lee Pederson, Ilkka Juuso, Lisa Lena Opas-Hänninen, and Tapio Seppänen (2013). "The Digital Archive of Southern Speech (DASS)." Southern Journal of Linguistics, 27 (2). 17–38.
  • Olsen, Rachel M., Michael Olsen, Joseph A. Stanley, Margaret E. L. Renwick, & William A. Kreztschmar, Jr. (2017). "Methods for transcription and forced alignment of a legacy speech corpus." Proceedings of Meetings on Acoustics 30, 060001; doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1121/2.0000559.
  • Pederson, L., McDaniel, S. L., and Adams, C. M. (Eds.) (1986). Linguistic Atlas of the Gulf States, University of Georgia Press, Athens, Georgia, Vols. 1–7.
  • Renwick, Margaret E. L. & Rachel M. Olsen (2017). "Analyzing dialect variation in historical speech corpora." The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 142, 406; doi: https://doi.org/10.1121/1.4991009.
  • Renwick, Margaret E. L. & Joseph A. Stanley (2017). “Static and dynamic approaches to vowel shifting in the Digital Archive of Southern Speech.” Proceedings of Meetings on Acoustics 30, 060003; doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1121/2.0000582.

Conference Presentations (chronological)

  • Stanley, Joseph A., Margaret E. L. Renwick, William A. Kretzschmar Jr., Rachel M. Olsen, & Michael Olsen (2018). “The Gazetteer of Southern Vowels.” The American Dialect Society Annual Meeting. Salt Lake City, UT.
  • Foster, Shawn, Joseph A. Stanley, & Margaret E. L. Renwick (2017). "Vowel Mergers in the American South." Poster presentation at the 174th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA). New Orleans, LA. Charleston, SC.
  • Olsen, Rachel, Michael Olsen, & Margaret E. L. Renwick. (2017). "Acoustically quantifying /ai/ monophthongization in four southern dialect regions." Poster presentation at the 174th Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA). New Orleans, LA. Charleston, SC.
  • Olsen, Rachel M. & Michael Olsen (2017). "Lexical frequency effects on the southern shift in the Digital Archive of Southern Speech." New Ways of Analyzing Variation (NWAV) 46. Madison, WI.
  • Olsen, Rachel M. & Margaret E. L. Renwick (2017). "Linking acoustic correlates of rhoticity to pereption: How the past informs the present." New Ways of Analyzing Variation (NWAV) 46. Madison, WI.
  • Renwick, Margaret E. L., Michael Olsen, Rachel M. Olsen, & Joseph A. Stanley (2017). "Transcription and forced alignment of the Digital Archive of Southern Speech." Poster presentation at the 173rd Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA). Boston, MA.
  • Renwick, Margaret E. L. & Joseph A. Stanley (2017). “A historical perspective on vowel shifting: Acoustic analysis of the Digital Archive of Southern Speech.” Poster presentation at the 173rd Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America (ASA). Boston, MA.
  • Kretzschmar, William A., Joseph A. Stanley, & Katherine Kuiper (2017). "Automated Large-Scale Phonetic Analysis: DASS." 84th Meeting of the SouthEastern Conference on Linguistics. Charleston, SC.
  • Olsen, Rachel M., Michael Olsen, Joseph A. Stanley, & Margaret E. L. Renwick (2017). "Transcribing the Digital Archive of Southern Speech: Methods and Preliminary Analysis." 84th Meeting of the SouthEastern Conference on Linguistics. Charleston, SC.
  • Olsen, Rachel M., Michael Olsen, Katherine Kuiper, Joseph A. Stanley, Margaret E. L. Renwick, & William A. Kretzschmar, Jr. (2017). “New Perspectives on Historical Southern Speech.” Panel presented at the 2017 Integrative Research and Ideas Symposium. Athens, GA.

R Packages

  • Eric Bailey (2015). shinyBS: Twitter Bootstrap Components for Shiny. R package version 0.61.
  • Original S code by Richard A. Becker, Allan R. Wilks. R version by Ray Brownrigg. Enhancements by Thomas P Minka and Alex Deckmyn. (2016). maps: Draw Geographical Maps. R package version 3.1.1.
  • Winston Chang, Joe Cheng, JJ Allaire, Yihui Xie and Jonathan McPherson (2017). shiny: Web Application Framework for R. R package version 1.0.e. See also shiny.rstudio.com
  • Hadley Wickham (2009). ggplot2: Elegant Graphics for Data Analysis. Springer-Verlag New York. (R package version 2.2.1 is used here.) See also ggplot2.tidyverse.org
  • Hadley Wickham (2016). stringr: Simple, Consistent Wrappers for Common String Operations. R package version 1.2.0. See also stringr.tidyverse.org
  • Hadley Wickham, Romain Francois, Lionel Henry and Kirill Müller (2017). dplyr: A Grammar of Data Manipulation. R package version 0.7.4. See also dplyr.tidyverse.org
  • Hadley Wickham, Jim Hester and Romain Francois (2017). readr: Read Rectangular Text Data. R package version 1.1.1. See also readr.tidyverse.org
  • Yihui Xie (2016). DT: A Wrapper of the JavaScript Library 'DataTables'. R package version 0.2.
  • Achim Zeileis (2014). ineq: Measuring Inequality, Concentration, and Poverty. R package version 0.2-13.

Following consonant

General Options


Speaker Summary

Vowel Summary