The East Midlands

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The East Midlands, while defined as a dialect area in several dialectological texts (Hughes, Trudgill and Watt 2012; Trudgill 1999; Wells 1982), has been largely ignored by variationists and is frequently subsumed into the general “Northern” dialect region (as in Kortmann and Upton’s 2008 text). Evidence from perceptual research has revealed that even inhabitants of the East Midlands area find it difficult to define the boundaries of ‘the East Midlands’ as a region, and vary in their placement of a dividing line between the linguistic north and south (Braber 2014). It is therefore perhaps not surprising that dialectologists have so far failed to agree consistently on how to classify and treat the accent of the East Midlands, and its major urban areas of Nottingham, Derby and Leicester. This chapter focuses on Nottingham, one of the main centres of the East Midlands, to examine language variation.


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