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Old 07-10-2014, 06:00 PM
 
3,431 posts, read 3,047,262 times
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I personally enjoy listening to Singlish, I love accents and dialects in general. I had friends in university who were from Singapore and used Singlish vocabulary amongst themselves, but spoke in a pretty broad English accent with Canadians, that I found perfectly understandable.

The Singapore government upholds a standard British accent as the ideal, if I understand correctly? It's interesting, because nowadays, one could just as easily argue that a common American accent (like a mainstream perhaps "Midwest" American accent) could also be used as a standard. American English dominates the entertainment industry and to an extent business too. I suspect that everyone in Singapore gets quite a bit of exposure to mainstream British and American accents through mass media.

As long as students are learning mainstream English grammar in school, I don't see the accent or local vocabulary as a major problem.
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Old 07-10-2014, 06:20 PM
 
Location: Woodbridge, VA
82 posts, read 202,131 times
Reputation: 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pavement Pounder View Post
How many accents are romantic, really? I hardly think our Aussie accent sounds romantic, or imagine say a Scottish accent. It is cute though, and very funny, great for comedy haha...
french, italian, portuguese......... russian can be sexy too imo

OZ accent is just plain funny. reminds me of steve irwin (even though that's only the real out back accent)
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Old 07-10-2014, 06:21 PM
 
Location: singapore
1,526 posts, read 1,271,761 times
Reputation: 416
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pavement Pounder View Post
What are you talking about? Have the PAP softened their stance on Singlish since Uncle Lee tried to eradicate it, like he did the 'dialects'?

Singlish is a continuum between a sort of creole and Singaporean-accented English, like Jamaican. It would be a crying shame if it were lost, it is part of Singaporean identity as well as a variety of English, I don't see how they are even mutually exclusive?

Uncle lee never tried to stop Singlish, but there is a speak good english campaign.

In line with the topic of language and language proficiency in Singapore, this may be of interest to some



Singapore might be completely English-speaking without bilingual policy: PM - Channel NewsAsia
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Old 07-10-2014, 06:26 PM
 
318 posts, read 407,662 times
Reputation: 167
Quote:
Originally Posted by singaporelady View Post
Uncle lee never tried to stop Singlish, but there is a speak good english campaign.

In line with the topic of language and language proficiency in Singapore, this may be of interest to some



Singapore might be completely English-speaking without bilingual policy: PM - Channel NewsAsia
Well he discouraged and disparaged it.

And what would wrong with being completely English speaking? Mandarin is no more the mother tongue of most Singaporeans than Mandarin. It might even improve the quality of their English.
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Old 07-11-2014, 10:00 AM
 
Location: Sandpoint, Idaho
2,897 posts, read 5,279,330 times
Reputation: 3073
There are several themes to debates on Singlish. There are the accents. There are the linguistics from grammar to syllable stresses to word order. Then there are the cultural rules in usage in different settings and with different people.

A Foreigner's POV.

Accents: I find that more often than not, they are charming. I prefer the accent of the older, educated generation. It is among the most elegant accents in the English-speaking world. With the youth, more of a mixed bag, some speak in a cute way, others with an awful accent. Then again, I think I view all youth around the world as a mixed bag.

Linguistics: I think that one can argue that Singlish is its own language, which rules that are not the same as in standard English. There seems to be an increasing divergence of Singlish from standard English among the youth. This might explain why foreigners from English and non-English speaking countries have so much difficulty understanding Singlish. Sometimes it feels as if a book on English was dropped in Singapore to a population that already spoke other languages and dialects and then the English was self-taught, morphing into some unique hybrid with its own rules and conventions.

Usage: Here is where I find Singlish most interesting and potentially troubling. Accept for now my position than Singlish is a different language. Given that Singapore is an entrepot with an economy almost entirely dependent on global trade and investment, what then should be the language spoken in environments in which there are interactions with the global community, in Singapore and abroad? Should your answer be different than for interactions between Singaporeans? In other words, should usage have particular private vs. public adoption?

Of course, Singaporeans must decide these questions for themselves. However, from the global POV, I think standard English must be the language spoken for global business and academics. Further, young people must know where and when to switch on an off. From my experience, this was rarely done and leads to loads of frustration, misunderstanding, and criticism. Older folks like me, 50+, seem to be able to switch quite easily having grown up with an understanding of the difference of private vs. public speech. Younger people, especially those say 15-25, have no such self-reflection, save for the very privileged to have spent extensive time overseas and have thus developed an ability to look at themselves from a fresh perspective. There is a very cute video of a Yale video of a talented young woman who perfected the ability to turn on and off. Unfortanately, she is the super rare exception.

When the switch is not made and an audience engaged in discourse in standard Engilsh then interacts with someone speaking hardcore Singlish, the results are usually quite awful. From the POV of standard English, a youth speaking a hardcore Singlish can come off as speaking unintelligible gibberish. And said youth thinking he or she is a standard English speaker fails to code switch.

What to do? 1) Do not discourage the language of the people. 2) Recognize the linguistic difference and emphasize it in the honest study of English as second language. 3) Teach the code switch as necessary cultural and business etiquette and as a necessary component of conducting global business.

Do these things and all will win. Try to force the idea the Singlish should be lingua franca with global business interactions and be prepared to continue to laughed at (or worse)in perpetuity. Repress Singlish and further alienate the people from their rulers.

S.
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Old 07-11-2014, 05:22 PM
 
318 posts, read 407,662 times
Reputation: 167
^ I think most Singaporeans in a professional or business environment know when to switch on and off. A lot of them more just speak Singaporean-accented English anyway. Many of my relatives in Singapore mostly just speak English with a Singaporean accent. I used to think that was Singlish until quite recently actually.
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Old 07-12-2014, 12:01 AM
 
Location: singapore
1,526 posts, read 1,271,761 times
Reputation: 416
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandpointian View Post
There are several themes to debates on Singlish. There are the accents. There are the linguistics from grammar to syllable stresses to word order. Then there are the cultural rules in usage in different settings and with different people.

A Foreigner's POV.

Accents: I find that more often than not, they are charming. I prefer the accent of the older, educated generation. It is among the most elegant accents in the English-speaking world. With the youth, more of a mixed bag, some speak in a cute way, others with an awful accent. Then again, I think I view all youth around the world as a mixed bag.

Linguistics: I think that one can argue that Singlish is its own language, which rules that are not the same as in standard English. There seems to be an increasing divergence of Singlish from standard English among the youth. This might explain why foreigners from English and non-English speaking countries have so much difficulty understanding Singlish. Sometimes it feels as if a book on English was dropped in Singapore to a population that already spoke other languages and dialects and then the English was self-taught, morphing into some unique hybrid with its own rules and conventions.

Usage: Here is where I find Singlish most interesting and potentially troubling. Accept for now my position than Singlish is a different language. Given that Singapore is an entrepot with an economy almost entirely dependent on global trade and investment, what then should be the language spoken in environments in which there are interactions with the global community, in Singapore and abroad? Should your answer be different than for interactions between Singaporeans? In other words, should usage have particular private vs. public adoption?

Of course, Singaporeans must decide these questions for themselves. However, from the global POV, I think standard English must be the language spoken for global business and academics. Further, young people must know where and when to switch on an off. From my experience, this was rarely done and leads to loads of frustration, misunderstanding, and criticism. Older folks like me, 50+, seem to be able to switch quite easily having grown up with an understanding of the difference of private vs. public speech. Younger people, especially those say 15-25, have no such self-reflection, save for the very privileged to have spent extensive time overseas and have thus developed an ability to look at themselves from a fresh perspective. There is a very cute video of a Yale video of a talented young woman who perfected the ability to turn on and off. Unfortanately, she is the super rare exception.

When the switch is not made and an audience engaged in discourse in standard Engilsh then interacts with someone speaking hardcore Singlish, the results are usually quite awful. From the POV of standard English, a youth speaking a hardcore Singlish can come off as speaking unintelligible gibberish. And said youth thinking he or she is a standard English speaker fails to code switch.

What to do? 1) Do not discourage the language of the people. 2) Recognize the linguistic difference and emphasize it in the honest study of English as second language. 3) Teach the code switch as necessary cultural and business etiquette and as a necessary component of conducting global business.

Do these things and all will win. Try to force the idea the Singlish should be lingua franca with global business interactions and be prepared to continue to laughed at (or worse)in perpetuity. Repress Singlish and further alienate the people from their rulers.

S.
Singaporeans must decide these questions for themselves. This pretty summarises everything and is the end of debate.. Period....

The best statement ever !!!
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Old 07-12-2014, 01:35 AM
 
Location: Sandpoint, Idaho
2,897 posts, read 5,279,330 times
Reputation: 3073
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pavement Pounder View Post
^ I think most Singaporeans in a professional or business environment know when to switch on and off. A lot of them more just speak Singaporean-accented English anyway. Many of my relatives in Singapore mostly just speak English with a Singaporean accent. I used to think that was Singlish until quite recently actually.
Unfortunately not. Of course as you climb up the ladder in wealth and education, you will find this ease with code switching. For the vast majority, it is not the case.

Again, the Singaporean accent is not the issue. it is Singlish as a linguistic and cultural device that makes it something all togther different.

S.
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Old 07-13-2014, 10:36 PM
 
110 posts, read 106,710 times
Reputation: 25
it is fun listening to singlish speakers...

"hey you want regular **** or not?"
"yes **** or sprite."

lol
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Old 07-13-2014, 10:37 PM
 
110 posts, read 106,710 times
Reputation: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigfoot09 View Post
it is fun listening to singlish speakers...

"hey you want regular **** or not?"
"yes **** or sprite."

lol
it's supposed to be COKE and not CO*K
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