Speech Patterns

by stronged

Now that I am back in the big smoke I have a tremendous amount of work to do. I have two soundscapes to assemble (one composed of the interview material, the other the atmos tracks I have taken from around the Bend); my diary entries of each individual expedition I took when out in the Bend; a pattern to find by SNU’ifying each vine; the piecing together of vines to vary the duration of each SNU to resemble more a piece of music than a conventional documentary; work more on writing my exegesis, honing those key theories down into relevant points to my project; compiling the lists and maps that I have come across in my research thus far.

Editing the interviews has been an illuminating experience, drawing my focus on my interviewing technique as well as the interesting speech patterns people have. Many people seem to find it hard to keep up with their thought processes, rushing in the hope of including everything that comes to mind. It has been common that people do not finish their sentences before jumping into the next one. Others stall on ums and ahs in order to tailor-make their answers the best they can before trying to articulate them. This stalling is a way to signal they are not finished with explaining something or recounting an experience. Other connecting terms they use may include “and” or “but” to bridge their dialogue to the next thought. I have found the educators the most careful in their use of terminology and phrasing whereas the trades people have a more story-like way of explaining things, using personal anecdotes to highlight particular points. Colloquialisms have also been present, with some people punctuating their sentence with “i spose” or consistently adding “ya know” as they progress through an explanation.

One of my key concerns is the different terminology used within the community. I would expect this to occur in suburbia, but with such a close-knit community that has BICA, Landcare and the CFA to ensure residents are in a continual discourse, I would have thought everyone would be on the same page in regards to using the same terminology. However, Janet was using the up-to-date term SUZ2 (Special Use Zone 2) for what is more commonly used around the Bend as the ELZ (Environmental Living Zone). Similarly, Mick preferred using the Wurendjeri term burgan when speaking about the tea tree growth around the region, whereas Cric used the Latin name kunzea when speaking about it. This might make it tricky to piece together all of the interviews in the one soundscape as there is no continuity developed. I did ask Cric what kunzea meant and she explained it means burgan, but said this as a throwaway explanation rather than a byte I can thread into the overall soundscape.

I may need to interview someone else who can act as a translator to bridge each term if I end up using both Mick and Cric in a discussion about the burgan.