I'm looking for a good introduction to phonology book with good examples of diverse languages.


More on the phonetics than phonology side, but Ladefoged’s Vowels and Consonants is very accessible and the author is a standard reference. From there you should be able to follow The Sounds of the World’s Languages for discussion on a wide range of languages.

I’d also like to recommend, as a companion to whatever you choose, Catford’s A Practical Introduction to Phonetics. This is an unusual book; it’s very short but intense, because it’s all about practical exercises to get you to perform sounds of all kinds—including the more exotic things like ejectives and whatnot. It will give you an entirely different kind of hand-on knowledge about the possibilities of speech. Be warned that, while working on it, you will catch yourself unconsciously making funny noises in public and attracting attention.

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    Second the recommendation for Catford. I always told my students that when they study phonetics, they must give up all hope of personal dignity. This is why we should probably teach phonetics in the introductory grades, when the children can enjoy it. – jlawler May 15 '18 at 14:43
  • As a phonetics book, certainly, but why as a phonology book? – user6726 May 15 '18 at 17:40
  • @user6726 I assumed OP is using "phonology" broadly to mean phonetics+phonology. If the question is actually about phonological theories specifically, then I'm not qualified to recommend textbooks. – melissa_boiko May 15 '18 at 21:55
  • Unless someone knows phonetics rather well already, phonological theory is impenetrable. it would be like describing paintings while ignoring color. – jlawler May 17 '18 at 2:15

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