On 15 November 2012 23:33, Daniel Prohaska <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Well, a native language coach taught me to say [ɥɪ].

[ɥi] in general (which is useful for words like _lui_ and _huit_), or [ɥi]
for _oui_? Well, in that last case that person didn't know what they were
talking about. _oui_ is [wi], nothing more, nothing less. Saying [ɥi] will
result in misunderstandings.

> I know of the colloquial [wɛ] or [u̯ɛ] of course. Before that coaching
> session I also thought I was supposed to say [u̯i].

You were not. You were supposed to say [wi], not [ui]. I really mean it.

> I would transcribe ‹Louis› as [lui] and ‹lui› as [lyi].

Both are wrong, as French people make a strong distinction between the
vowels /u/, /y/ and /i/, and the approximants /w/, /ɥ/ and /j/. Your
transcriptions are only possible in French if those words were disyllabic
([lu.i] and [ly.i]), but they are not.

Be careful, French doesn't have any true diphthongs. It used to (in fact,
Old French was full of diphthongs and triphthongs!), but Modern French
simplified them all. Anything that might sound like a diphthong in Modern
French is actually a combination between an approximant and a vowel (which
is why French people have a hard time learning to pronounce the various
vowels of English correctly. They just aren't used to true diphthongs and
tend to replace those with fake diphthongs using approximants, resulting in
a characteristic accent).
Christophe Grandsire-Koevoets.