Date of Award
Master of Arts
This study investigates the attitudes of standard accented Turkish speakers towards non-standard Kurdish accented speakers of Turkish. Given the fact that there are strict language policies in Turkey, this paper analyzes the effect of such standard language ideologies on listener attitudes using a mixed-methods design. The study included 50 Turkish participants with ages ranging from 19 to 51. Participants completed a survey with 21 questions and could volunteer to also participate in an interview. The survey asked about biographical data, evaluations of various speakers and ratings of accents of Turkish. Using a matched guise technique in the survey, a Kurdish accented speaker was recorded both in standard and non-standard accented Turkish. To explore possible differences based on age, survey responses were divided into groups with young adults (under 30) and adults. For qualitative data, 13 respondents were interviewed to explore their language ideologies. The results show that the Kurdish accented speaker received the lowest scores among all the speakers in the survey and were perceived negatively in all categories such as pleasantness, correctness and educatedness When the standard accent was attained by the same speaker, the ratings increased. The attainment of the standard accent also effected the identification of the speaker as respondents identified the Kurdish speaker as “Kurdish” when they heard the non-standard and “Turkish” when they heard the standard accent. During the interviews, One nation-one language ideologies which was promoted in the country and the standard language ideologies have been observed.
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