The Lingua Franca Core and Englishes in East and Southeast Asia

  • David Deterding
  • Nur Raihan Mohamad


It has been argued, especially by Jenkins (2000, 2007), that it should not be the goal of learners to imitate speakers from the UK or USA. Instead, they should aim to achieve mutual intelligibility with other speakers of English as a Lingua Franca from around the world. This led her to propose the Lingua Franca Core, an inventory of pronunciation features that she suggests are necessary for maintaining intelligibility in international communication, while features outside the core are unimportant. However, the Lingua Franca Core remains controversial. This paper presents an overview of the pronunciation features of four varieties of English in the Outer Circle (using the Three Circles model of Kachru, 1985), Brunei English, Hong Kong English, Malaysian English and Singapore English, and one variety in the Expanding Circle, Chinese English, to assess the implications of the Lingua Franca Core for these varieties that have developed their own styles of pronunciation that increasingly distinguish them from Inner Circle styles of pronunciation. 


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Author Biographies

David Deterding
David Deterding is a professor at Universiti Brunei Darussalam, where he teaches phonetics, forensic linguistics, Malay-English translation and the history of English. His research focuses on a description of the pronunciation and intelligibility of Englishes in Southeast Asia.
Nur Raihan Mohamad
Nur Raihan Mohamad is studying for her PhD at Universiti Brunei Darussalam. Her research focuses on a comparison of the pronunciation of school students, undergraduates and English teachers.
How to Cite
Deterding, D., & Mohamad, N. R. (2016). The Lingua Franca Core and Englishes in East and Southeast Asia. Asiatic: IIUM Journal of English Language and Literature, 10(2). Retrieved from
Section II: Review Articles