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A REPLY TO A NOTE ON VOICE AND RACIAL CATEGORIZATION IN BRITAIN

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Abstract:

Although we are delighted that U.K. data we reported in sociolinguistic/communication contexts are being resurrected for critical consideration in a current social psychological domain, and by a reputable scholar who is emerging justifiably as a significant entity in language studies, we cannot but he extremely disappointed at the end-product. First, Ball's reanalysis, and his interpretation of it, are to say the least highly dubious. Given that about 20% of our Black samples were, as we have always claimed, correctly identified ethnically and that very few Caucasians were not heard as White, it is hardly surprising, if at all important, to learn now that “Black speakers are recognized as Black significantly more than White speakers are falsely categorized as Black” (our italics). Indeed, this in no way alters the overall picture that 80% of Blacks were mis-attributed as White. Moreover, when examining this statistical “significance”, we find that no significant differences in actuality emerged from two of Ball's analyses anyway. Even then, when he resorts to estimating marc data for further analyses, still the older group does not reach the conventional significance level.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.1982.10.2.249

Publication date: 1982-01-01

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