Friday, 9 September 2016

Speech errors

Linguistic study through University has taught me about common speech errors, the subject is interesting as these can occur in our daily speech due to activation of phonologically and semantically related words. These speech errors, or slips of the tongue, based on cognition are sure to have caused embarrasing situations and laughter. The utterances deviate from the intension, this post is to give you insight in to the types of errors used with some examples! 

Errors of Phonemes:

Anticipation: a sound intended to appear later in utterance appears sooner.
e.g. instead of saying a reading list, saying a leading list.
In this example, the letter L from the start of list appears at the start of reading aswell.

Preservation: sound appears earlier on reappears inappropriately later
e.g. instead of saying beef noodle saying beef needle.
In this example we see that the ee from beef replaces the oo in noodle.

Deletion: a sound that is intended to be spoken is not.
e.g. speech error - peech error.

Exchange: swap sounds around in utterance.
e.g. brake fluid - blake fruid. (single consonant in cluster exchanged)
e.g. drop a bomb - bop a dromb (whole consonant cluster exchanged with a single consonant)

Errors of Morphemes:

Exchange of word stems:  e.g. rules of word formation – words of rule formation

Shift of morpheme:  e.g. I’d forgotten about that – I’d forgot abouten that

Substitution: e.g. there’s a good likelihood – there’s a good likeliness

Addition: e.g. they can’t quite make it – they can’t quitely make it

Errors of Words:

Semantic substitutions:
  • Antonyms e.g. “too hot, I mean cold”
  • Same semantic field e.g. shirt for coat   
  • Distant association e.g. fire for smoke 
  • Form-based phonological substitutions: e.g. guess for dress

Mixed: erroneous word is similar both phonologically and semantically.
e.g. weather permitting – weather preventing.

Word changes: e.g. I love to dance – I dance to love

Word blends: e.g. It was maistly his doing (mostly + mainly)

Whole phrases involved: e.g. I miss you a very much (a lot + very much)

Speech errors can often be made when nervous, imagine being in the middle of an important speech in a meeting and saying: "I'm here to yell you, tell you" or being at a job interview and saying: "I'm learn to willing", or being on a first date and saying "this has been a dovely dinner, lovely!". They may be embarrassing or funny, but speech errors are common. Our brains are complex and our production of speech is bound to slip up once in a while, at least now you may be able to classify which speech error you made and how they were formed. 

This post is written with thanks and credit to DMU.