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English Influence on Swedish Word Formation and Segmentals


Anders Lindström


The object of this study is to determine the nature and degree of English influence on contemporary spoken Swedish at the phonological and morphological levels. Particular attention is paid to certain contact-linguistically critical situations of importance for speech technology applications. Several corpora of spoken and written Swedish are analyzed regarding segmental and word formation effects. The results suggest that any description of contemporary spoken Swedish (be it formal, pedagogical or technical) needs to be extended to cover both phonological and morphological material of English origin. Previous studies of socio-linguistic and other underlying factors governing the variability observed have shown that education and age play a significant role, but that individual variability is large. It is suggested that interacting phonological constraints and their relaxation may be one way of explaining this. An attempt at a diachronic comparison is also made, showing that morphological processes involving English material are frequent in contemporary Swedish, while virtually non-existing in two corpora of spoken Swedish from the mid 1960s. Requirements for speech technology applications are also discussed.

How to Cite: Lindström, A., 2004. English Influence on Swedish Word Formation and Segmentals. Nordic Journal of English Studies, 3(2), pp.115–142. DOI:
Published on 01 Jul 2004.


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