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LESSON 1 NOTES

1By 'sounds' in this sentence I am referring strictly to phonemes; several studies have noted that allophonic variation is quite common in Hawaiian, particularly when stress is involved. In her work, A phonemic analysis of Hawaiian, Helen Luise Newbrand identified [ʌ, ə] as allophones of /a/, with [ə] usually occurring in unstressed positions, and [ε] as an allophone of /e/, usually occurring in stressed positions. Certain phonological environments are also known to trigger e → ε, such as when /e/ follows a syllable containing [e], or when /e/ is adjacent to /n/ or /l/ (Elbert 1979, 14). Other allophones were reported as well including some for consonants. See Newbrand.

2The technical terms for 'hiss-like' sounds are 'sibilant fricatives' and 'affricates'.

3The spelled pronunciations I used for vowels and diphthongs are as followed: [a] <ah>, [aː] <ahh>, [æ] <ae>, [ə] <uh>, [e] <eh>, [eː] <ehh>, [i] <ee>, [ɪ] <ih>, [iː] <eee>, [o] <oh>, [oː] <ohh>, [u] <oo>, [uː] <ooo>, [aɪ] <ai, ye>, [eɪ] <ay>, [oʊ] <ohw>. For [ʔ] I used <->.

4Since one must speak English in order to read this document, explaining Hawaiian pronunciation in terms of how it relates to English pronunciation is an effective teaching strategy. While not every one speaks English natively, nor the same dialect of English, General English was selected because it is the standard dialect of the country in which Hawaiian is spoken, and even if a student does not speak that variety, at least it can be heard on major television and radio programs. Besides, it would be infeasible to cater to each variety of spoken English.

5By 'W sound' I am referring to [ʊ].

6Albert J. Schütz hypothesized that /w/ could have originally been /ʋ/ (Schütz 1994, 121).

7Originally, b, d, r, t, and v were used to write Hawaiian and f, g, s, and y were used to record foreign terms.

8None of these words are cognates and they share the same meaning due to either coincidence or borrowing. Mole refers to mole the animal, not the blemish. The word for aloe is spelled with an initial ‘okina in Hawaiian: ‘aloe, but this fact was ignored since in English a glottal stop precedes the A in 'aloe' as well. Like means like in the sense of as or similar to, not in the sense of 'to like something'.

9There is much debate over what Hawaiian's diphthongs are, (though everyone agrees on ae, ai, ao, au, ei, eu, oi and ou). It has been observed that Hawaiian diphthongs are not adjoined as closely as English diphthongs, but it is accepted that these combinations are longer than say, their opposites: ea, ia, oa, ua, ie, ue, io and uo.

Some authors add āi, āe, āo, āu, ēi, ōu, but not everyone agrees that this analysis is correct. Some add iu and/or ui.

Rising Diphthong Pronunciation IPA
  iu similar to the word 'you' /iu/
  ui similar to the exclamation 'wee'! /ui/

Since Hawaiian diphthongs and stress have not been adequately studied, however, I have kept to the most conservative span of: ae, ai, ao, au, ei, eu, oi and ou, for which there is consensus.

10The Hawaiian Stress Rule is by no means specific to the Hawaiian language; it is merely an amiable way of saying 'penultimate stress'.

11Elizabeth Tatar has also recorded several other dramatic changes that occur when Hawaiian is sung or chanted, identifying [æ] as an allophone of /a/, [ɪ] as an allophone of /i/, and [ʌ] as an allophone of /o/, and so forth, not to mention a plethora of consonant allophones (Tatar 1982, 80). In addition to these, Helen Roberts reported that a sound between TH and Z was used interchangeably with t and k in chanting (Roberts 1967, 72).

12‘Īlio‘īliu and pua‘apu‘a are specifically documented taken from Ruby Kawena Kinny's work A non-purist view of Morphomorphemic Variations in Hawaiian Speech, (Kinny 1956, 284).

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