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A lallation (also called cambia-letras or troca-letra, "letter changer", in Latin American countries) is an imperfect enunciation of the letter "L", in which it sounds like "R" (or vice versa), as frequently found in infantile speech.

The speech pattern has been particularly associated with the use of the Portuguese, Spanish and English languages by Chinese,[1] Korean,[2] and Japanese people.[3] (Or even among Portuguese-speakers themselves in certain conditions, e.g., branco, "white", vs. Spanish blanco.[citation needed]) The use of lallation has thus been a common feature of Western stereotypes of East Asian people. It is also common among English-speakers in parts of East Africa.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Noah Jonathan Jacobs (September 15, 1958). "Word Game". Retrieved July 13, 2016. 
  2. ^ Gloria Borden; Adele Gerber; Gary Milsark (1983). "PRODUCTION AND PERCEPTION OF THE /r/-/l/ CONTRAST IN KOREAN ADULTS LEARNING ENGLISH". Language Learning. 33 (4): 499–526. doi:10.1111/j.1467-1770.1983.tb00946.x. 
  3. ^ "Cowboys and Japanese". March 8, 1988. Retrieved July 13, 2016.