Why exactly is じょし pronounced differently in the audio?

short video screenshot: why the difference in pronunciation?

Is the male or female audio the Tokyo accent? Is he pronouncing it differently cause all males do or is it a dialect?

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They are both Tokyo dialect speakers.

Just like in your own language male and female speakers will have variation within the same dialects!


I wouldn’t say it’s a male / female difference. It just happens to be that they are doing two different valid pronunciations.

Or, I should say, even if there is a slight discrepancy in the percentage of usage by gender, it’s not like you can’t use one or the other if you are a man or woman.

It’s worth noting that 女子 is often used as a modifier for something else (女子トイレ, 女子バスケットボール, 女子高生) etc. In this case, I don’t think devoicing the し like that is very common. The recording here is just it as a standalone word.


Many way to pronounce this kind of termination.
You have the same with です or ます that you may hear as dess/mass or desu/masu
The S sounds in general seems to be shortened, as in すこし which ir more a skoshi than a sukoshi.

The most tricky I heard was しち (as in 4 7) when counting. I am not able to describe / pronunce it the same way a native once told me, but it wasn’t shichi at all. :frowning:

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I thought しち was 七 i.e. 7? Either way, did it sound like the ‘fast’ version at the end of this video by any chance?

Perhaps I’m being too liberal about this, but I honestly just took it as the male speaker pronouncing the し softly/quickly without much emphasis on the ‘i’. The pitch variations seem to be the same, anyway, and I think that’s more important. Devoicing sometimes ‘just happens’, but often enough both pronunciations are understood, and it’s really just a matter of which is more common.

And you are correct, I got distracted …
The し was more aspirated, that’s ressemble but not exactly. But that’s the idea! thanks.

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I heard at least 2 versions of いち when doing karate a long time ago - one had a very short ‘i’ sound at the end.

I think I missed this in 女子 or I didn’t play the audio then. Sounds a little weird, yeah.


This is just vowel devoicing, which is very common for I and U vowels when at the end of a word after a voiceless consonant or in-between two voiceless consonants.


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