The linguistic properties of stuttered speech
Muthamia, Purity N
MetadataShow full item record
Stuttering can be defined as speech characterized by repetitions and prolongations of syllables, sounds and words, which lead to an abnormal set standard of speech. This study is a single case-study of a girl, aged four and half years, who manifests stuttering in her speech. This investigation seeks to verify the linguistic properties that are perceived to be inherently "difficult" for stutterers, particularly those living in a multilingual setting such as Nairobi. The subject under investigation is exposed to English, Kiswahili and to a limited extent to Kimeru and Kikuyu. The conceptual framework consisted of Anticipatory Struggle Theories. The main objectives of this study were to give a detailed analysis of the linguistic characteristics like the grammatical class, the length of the word and the position of a word in a sentence frequently stuttered as manifested in the speech of the subject under investigation. This entailed investigating whether the subject stuttered more severely in one language than on others. The data analyzed consisted of the spontaneous speech of the subject in different contexts and people. This was then collected through video- and/or tape recordings. The conclusions were that stuttering occurred most frequently on function words, word-initial sounds and multi-syllabic words. In addition, stuttering was more likely to occur in Kiswahili as compared to English, which we attribute to the subject's exposure to English being more than her exposure to Kiswahili. This thesis is divided into six chapters, each dealing with a particular aspect of the investigation. Chapter one the introduction, presents background information on stuttering, the statement of the problem, the objectives of the study, the hypotheses, significance and justification, scope and limitations, the methodology and the conceptual framework. Chapter two reviewed the available literature on stuttering. In particular, the chapter discussed studies which have been previously carried out on the linguistic properties of stuttered speech and the stages of development of stuttering. Chapter three focuses on the primary characteristics of stuttering. Chapter four looks at the phonological attributes of the stuttered linguistic elements. Chapter five analyzes the severity of stuttering in English as compared to Kiswahili as well as the structure of code-switched and code-mixed words produced during stuttering. Lastly, in chapter six conclusions and recommendations are given.