An Articulatory Analysis of English Consonants Produced by Pashto Native Speakers of Different Dialects


  • Dr. Abdul Malik Abbasi
  • Dr. Illahi Bux
  • Ms. Javeriya Ahmed Hussain
  • Ms. Ahlam Khan
  • Mr. Karim Nawaz



This perceptual study explores the challenges faced by Pashto ESL learners in articulating nine English consonants. The study focuses on identifying the most problematic sounds and providing a learnable solution. Previous studies examined around six troublesome consonantal sounds, however, this perceptual and productive study focuses on the targeted consonantal sounds. The primary goal of the study is to determine why Khilji, Khatak, and Afridi dialects of Pashto speakers struggle with these sounds. The study examines the phonetic and phonological differences between the two languages and how these disparities affect the articulation of Pashto native speakers. The study is designed based on the Contrastive Analysis Theory formulated by Lado (1967). For this, nine consonants were selected for recording, which include the voiceless labio-dental fricative /f/, the voiced labio-dental fricative /v/, the voiceless dental fricative /θ/, the voiced dental fricative /ð/, the voiced post-alveolar fricative /ʒ/, the voiceless velar stop /k/, the voiceless alveolar ridge stop /t/, the voiced labio-velar approximant /w/ and the voiced alveolar stop /d/. By utilizing the purposive sampling technique, six participants were selected from colleges and universities in Karachi speaking three different dialects of Pashto. Pashto speakers recorded the speech stimuli as per protocols of the study.  The results reveal that Pashto ESL learners find the voiceless labio-dental fricative /f/, voiceless velar stop /k/, voiceless alveolar ridge stop /t/, and voiced alveolar stop /d/ less challenging to articulate. On the other hand, the most problematic sounds were voiced and voiceless inter-dental fricatives /θ/ and /ð/, voiced labio-dental fricative /v/, voiced Alveo-palatal fricative /ʒ/ and voiced labio-velar approximant /w/. The finding reveals that the difference in sound systems between the two languages and the absence of sounds in their native language cause Pashto native speakers to have difficulty in pronouncing these sounds. The finding is not in line with the previous studies in terms of articulation variations on account of dialectal features.   


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How to Cite

Abbasi, D. A. M. ., Bux, D. I., Hussain, M. J. A. ., Khan, M. A. ., & Nawaz, M. K. . (2024). An Articulatory Analysis of English Consonants Produced by Pashto Native Speakers of Different Dialects. Migration Letters, 21(S4), 451–464.




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