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THE PROBLEMS IN PRONOUNCING ENGLISH FRICATIVES


CHAPTER I
INTRODUCTION

This Chapter consists of general background, reasons for choosing the topic, research questions, objectives of the  study, significance of the study, method of investigation, the limitation of the study, and the outline of the study. Below are the detailed descriptions.  
1.1  General Background
Language is a means of communication among human beings. With the language, people can cooperate and get along with each other; they can do whatever they are going to do.  English, as other languages used by  mankind in the world, is a means of communication among human beings. By this means, orally or written, they could interact with each other and do everything in their society as social beings.
As an international language, English is a demand for countries throughout the world. Indonesia is one of the countries that uses English as a foreign language. As a foreign language, English is very different from Indonesian, not only in terms of vocabulary and its structure but also in terms of its sound system. Christopersen (1981:1) says, “Every language on earth has its own particular set of words, most of which are quite different from those of  any other languages”.
Therefore, Indonesians have problems when they learn English, both in making good English sentences and in pronouncing them correctly. Pronunciation is absolutely crucial in learning language including English. It has significant role in determining the degree of literacy in one’s communication with others, in as much as to talk with other people one must pronounce words. Yet, pronunciation problems are common in learning foreign languages, including English. Ramelan (1985: 4) states: If someone wants to learn a foreign  language he will obviously meet all kinds of learning problems. Those difficulties have to do with the learning of sound system, the learning of the new vocabulary items and the learning of the unfamiliar ways of arranging the foreign words into sentences.
We have to pay attention to pronunciation because when we make mistakes in pronouncing English words, it can cause misunderstanding between the speaker and the listener. There will  be good communication if the words are pronounced correctly and fluently.
 Most of Indonesian students have  problems in producing some of the English sounds and some of them are fricative consonants [f, v, θ, ð, s, ­ , ­ , z, r, h]. Ramelan (1985:119) argues “an Indonesian student, in learning English, is likely to have difficulty in pronouncing the English fricatives [v,  θ, ð,  ­ ,  ­,  r] since these sounds are not used by most Indonesian speakers in speaking their language”. Pronunciation becomes very essential in learning English because when we make mistakes in pronouncing the English words, the listener may not understand what we mean. The pronunciation of the English fricatives is essential although English fricatives are just a small part of the English phonology. Recently, in Pondok Pesantren Durrotu Ahlissunnah Waljamaah \Gunungpati Semarang, there is a community of English fans named Aswaja  Conversation Club (ACC). This club has 30 members. They are supposed to have great potential ability to be able to pronounce some  fricatives of English sounds that are difficult for most Indonesian students as stated above. Some of the fricatives are?????????

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