English consonants detail analyzation or The criteria for description and classification of consonants

In linguistic there are two broad categories of sound i.e. VOWEL and CONSONANT

Consonants:- In English alphabet, consonants are those speech sounds that is not a vowel for ex; apart from a, e, i, o, u are all consonants. There are 21 consonants in English.

In other words, a consonant in articulatory phonetics, is a speech sound that is articulated with complete or partial closure of the vocal tract.

Example like; [p] and [b] pronounced with lips

                         [t] and [d] pronounced with front tongue

                         [h] pronounced in the throat while,

                         [m] and [n] as they have air flowing through the nose pronounced with nasal

                         [v] and [s] pronounced by forcing air through a narrow- channels called (fricatives)

Therefore, we produced consonant by involving vocal tracts, narrower at some location than it usually is. We call this narrowing a constriction.

Also, producing consonant depends on a few other things such as; whether the vocal folds are vibrating or whether air is flowing through nose.

Consonants are classified on three  major dimensions i.e.

  1. The place of Articulation (alveolar)
  2. Manner of Articulation (oral stop)
  3. Voicing (voiced or voiceless)

The place of Articulation:- This dimension specifies where in the vocal tract, constriction is or narrowing occurs from front to back the POAs that English has are; Bilabial, Labiodental, Dental, Alveolar, Post-Alveolar, Retroflex, Palatal, Velar, and Glottal.

  • Bilabial:- In this, both upper and lower lips approach or touch each other while pronouncing bilabial consonants, for ex; [post] [broad] [meal] etc.
  • Labio- dental:- In this, the lower lip approaches or touches the upper teeth while pronouncing labio-dental consonant words, for ex; [vow] [f] [v] etc.
  • Alveolar:- In this, the tongue tip approaches or touches the alveolar ridge while producing alveolar consonant, for ex; [tool] [day] [lip] [zoo] [t] [d] etc.
  • Velar:- In velar, the body of the tongue approaches the soft palate or velum, for ex; [rock] [ring] [bag] etc.
  • Glottal:- The Glottal sounds are the two cord sounds which moves closer resulting in a narrowing of the air passage, for ex; [hat] [h] etc.
  • Palatal:- In this, the body of the tongue touches the hard palate, for ex; [yard] [j] etc.
  • Dental:- In dental production of consonant, the tip or blade of the tongue touches the upper teeth, for ex; [think] [thin] [these] etc.

Manner of Articulation:-  It refers to the specification of the kind of closure or narrowing in the production of a sound.

Also, in order to give a complete description of a consonant it is  necessary to specify the manner of articulation.

Manner of articulation are classified as the followings;

(nasal stops like [n] involving airflow by nose)

(oral stops like [t] [d] do not involve airflow)

  • Fricative:- to produce fricative sound there is no closure made anywhere, there is only a narrowing, the articulators involved in the constriction approach to get close enough to each other to create a turbulent airstream.

The fricatives in English; [f] [v] [s] [z] etc.

  • Plosive:- to produce plosive there is a complete closure of the articulators at some point in the vocal tract by completing, shutting off the air passage.

For ex; [pit] [bit] [tip] [dip] [keep] etc.

  • Lateral:- sounds which involves airflow around the side of the tongue are called laterals. Those which are not lateral sounds are known as central.

For ex; [left] [life] etc.

  • Affricates:- affricates are produced by a complete closure of the air passage, followed by the building up of pressure behind the closure and the gradual released of the blocked air.

For ex; [choice] [joy] etc.

Voicing:-  It is classified between two categories i.e. Voiceless and Voiced

Voiceless- If there is no ‘hum’ or  ‘buzz’ sound could be heard during the production of the sound, this sound will be voiceless.

Voiced- If there is a ‘hum’ or ‘buzz’ sound during the production of sound and vocal cords vibrate, this sound will be voiced.

There are several pairs of sound in English which is different in voicing, are as follow;

Voiceless   Voiced

[p]                  [b]

[t]                   [d]

[k]                   [g]

[f]                   [v]

[s]                    [z]

The need and process of standardization of language

What do you mean by standard language?

Standard language defined as an official form of language, which has undergone substantial regularization and is associated with formal schooling language assessment.

What is the process of standardization of a language?

Standardization is a process in which language is standardized for its linguistic forms as well as social communicative function of language.

In other words, A language becomes standard through a process called standardization, it is mainly done by governments authority. It generally needs some well- prepared and systemic steps and procedures.

For ex: “tribal language” of a group of some race in certain country like Indonesia has been standardized. Standardization is the key word  for the modern period.

Some events which played important, role in changing and that is,

  1. Renaissance was the first period making changes
  2. Industrial Revolution.
  3. Migration and Settlement in land like; USA, Australia Canada and New Zealand.
  4. Imperial colonization of Asian and African lands.

Standardization is much more concerned with the written language I, e lexical, morphological and syntactical rother than the spoken language, for instance phonological long feathers.

Need for standardization of language

  • The standardization of a language is needed to show the identity and integrity of a nation.
  • A language of a nation should be standardization to get its formality.
  • It needed to allow the language to serve as a model for everyone in the community to agree upon in order to communicate.
  • Having a common, mutually comprehensible language unifies the member of a community.
  • It also needed to reflect and symbolize some kind of identity and sometimes it can be used ton give prestige to speakers.
  • It is needed to make the language easier to teach in school or institution.

Therefore, the standardization of a language we can say that are helpful for a nation or world and it basically provides flexibility between the nations.     

The Process of standardization:-

Standardization is necessary and vital process for any language. According to (2004) linguist’s approach, standardization have often concentrated on the identification of the regional and or social dialects, which form the phonological, morphological and syntactic basis of standard of language.

Standardization process needs some interrelated steps. According (Holmes-2001) it should follow few steps like;

  1. Selection: Choosing the variety or coded to be developed.
  2. Codification: Standardization its structural or linguistic features.
  3. Elaboration: Extended its functions for use on new domain.
  4. Securing its acceptance: Enhancing its prestige for instance, encourage people to develop pride in the language or loyalty towards it.

Not only these, but the process also involves the development of such things as grammars, spellings books, and dictionaries and possibly a literature.

This definition has two main features,

(I) written language, it is the representation of a language by means of writing system, and

(II) regularization, it is to make a certain language that already exist legally official.

Therefore, standard language is a particular language, which is correct, acceptable and used by most people. It is much more related to the written language which involves the feature of Orthopological i.e. the system of spelling in a language; Morphological i.e. the form of words and phrase put together to form sentence in a language.

Features of language which should be standardized:

  1. Grammar :- The rules in a language for changing the form of words and joining them into a sentence.
  2. Spelling :- The act of forming words correctly from individual letters.
  3. Word :- A single unit of language, a particular word or sound which can be spoken or written.
  4. Pronunciation :– A particular way in which a word or sound should be make or pronounced.
  5. System of writing:- The way in which books, letters, articles, posters, notices and other forms of scientific writing are written down.


Therefore, as we have discussed about the standardization i.e. why and how a language should be standardized and by which process? So, the language is that language is much more than a system of communication. It is a symbol of a nation that distinguishes each and every country and their people.