How To Tame A Wild Tongue & The
Date: Apr 25th, 2007 10:51:06 pm - Subscribe
Mood: saucy

Right after I moved to the Rockies, I was hanging out with some neighbors drinking. My southern accent slipped out a little and my friends heard the drawn out “hawny hawna haw” in my voice. They laughed and talked shit of course. I wasn’t really offended by this, and will never be. However, this was also my first encounter with the criticism about my accent. After all, where I grew up, everyone had one. Is acknowledging our accent personal choice, or something that we realize through social pressure?

There is something to be said for the fact that people get offended at someone’s unfamiliarity with certain characteristics of a culture that might be expressed or revealed simply by going to a new place and experiencing it first hand, and appreciating it for it’s culturistic uniqueness . After all, in any culture, it must be considered rude to have an outsider show up and criticize you and yours, instead of embracing it. So how can we (society) be okay with criticizing someone who is an outsider?

Comments: (2)

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myheart - April 25th, 2007
I have grown up and lived in Michigan my entire life. Yet in my teens my aunt pointed out an accent that she noticed I had. Ever since my friends have pointed out words, as well that I might say differently than them. Mostly because in Michigan the North has a different accent than the South I found out because I was going to school in more Northern Michigan for a while and I'm from the very Southern part.

I didn't even notice a difference in how I say words until someone said something to me. I figure it is just a mix of my dad's Southern accent, which my mom says she must have gotten used to and her Midwestern one.

I took a voice and diction class a few years ago one semester and became more aware of how I speak and my unique accent. It was just interesting, my professor just kept saying "this is how you are supposed to speak" when correcting people. Kinda agitated me, people in the U.S. don't all have the same way of speaking. Who really cares what proper English is.

Heck when I went to Germany last summer they didn't understand my English because they learn proper British English in school. We Americans don't speak proper English, we speak American English.

Just interesting. Could go on about other things people criticize about but the accent thing got me going. happy.gif


cthom - April 26th, 2007
i'm in the centre of scotland and can hear a dozen different accents, all local! yet mine apparently sounds like 'north east': only 300 miles away...


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