The Effects of Pashto /p/ and /w/ Phonemes on English /f/ and /v/: A Case Study of District Buner

Bakht Iqbal, Shakir Ullah, Noor Ur Rahim, Shahab Ullah


The present study aims to look into the problems faced by Pashto L1 teachers in the pronunciation of English labiodental voiced and voiceless fricatives /f/ and /v/. The study also focusses on their effects on the pronunciation of English the students at secondary level. The study is experimental in nature and quantitative approach was used for its data collection and analysis. A sample of four male teachers and eight students from four different schools (one teacher and two students from each school) in district Buner represented the whole population. The data was collected from the participants using high quality digital recorder Zoom H5 in a sound proof room. The word list contained various words having /p/, /w/, /f/ and /v/ at initial, medial and final positions. The findings of the study show the effects of bilabial voiceless plosive /p/ and bilabial voiced approximant /w/ on labiodental voiceless fricative /f/ and labiodental voiced fricative /v/ respectively. Pashto speakers articulate /p/ instead of /f/ and /w/ instead of /v/. The study further explored the reasons behind the erroneous pronunciation i.e. labiodental voiceless fricative /f/ is borrowed to Pashto from Arabic and is problematic for Pashto speakers while labiodental voiced fricative /v/ is not a phoneme in Pashto Phonetics.

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