Th-alveolarization

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Th-alveolarization is a process that occurs in some African varieties of English where the dental fricatives /ð, θ/ merge with the alveolar fricatives /z, s/. It is often parodied as ubiquitous to French-speaking learners of English, but is widespread among many foreign learners of English, because the dental fricative "th" sound is not very common among world languages. It is also common among German-speaking learners of English, as caricatured in the Volkswagen ads describing "Ze auto".

For some speakers of African American Vernacular English, /θ/ is alveolarized to /s/ when it occurs at the end of a syllable and within a word before another consonant, leading to such pronunciations as the following.[1]

bathroom - /bæs.ruːm/
birthday - /bɝs.deɪ/

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