the thesis is about the palatalization of apicals before /j/.
apicals are pronounced with the tip of the tongue. they are /t/, /d/, /s/, /z/, and /n/. i chose not to study /n/ because the palatalization is too hard to hear. when an apical sound is pronounced before a word beginning with y (the /j/ sound), it sometimes palatalizes -- and you get a different sound altogether. i miss you comes out sounding like i mish you and i hit you like i hitch you. i tape-recorded the speech of people around me in various age groups and socioeconomic backgrounds to see who does this palatalization and why.
still with me? read the paper.