Wednesday, March 4, 1998 at 07:26:36

an unusual example of a filled pause I've heard of is a lady who uses "I" (instead of "um" etc.)

- R

Indeed that is an interesting FP (filled pause).  I have noticed people who lengthen 'I' as a means of hesitation, as in "I--- don't know..."  or insert an unlexicalized FP just after 'I' in a sentence:  "I, uh, have to go to the toilet..."  However, the individual you mention apparently uses 'I' superfluously.  I wonder if you could give me a/some examples of this in her speech.   I would really appreciate it.

"we're going to ...I...develop this for the ...I...NGI"

i.e., truely using it as one would use "um" or "ah"

Thanks for the example of 'I' as a FP.  You're right, she uses it as if it were an 'um' or 'uh'.  Does she pronounce it as 'I', keeping a nearly normal speech rate, or is it an elongated sound which actually starts with the 'uh' syllable (e.g., "aaaaaaaiiiiiiiiiii')?  If the latter, I wonder if she is perhaps not conscious that she is producing the diphthong [ai], but rather gradually closes her jaw while uttering a standard FP sound (which would then naturally shift [a] towards[i]).   Which do you think is the case, here?

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