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Old 06-26-2007, 09:20 PM
 
Location: Richmond
1,489 posts, read 8,127,312 times
Reputation: 698

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Quote:
Originally Posted by missymomof3 View Post
My husband is Irish. Off the boat Irish. When we first met, his accent was so appealing and I was hooked. We were married three years later :-). However, I don't hear his accent much anymore unless he says certain words. Has he lost it? No, I am just used to it. Could it be that we are used to the way people around us talk?
I think we do. Because I know that when I travel to other parts of the country, my ears have to do some adjusting at first, and then I get kind of used to it.

This book I read about language said people are immitators. And no matter what we do, we eventually speak with the inflection and pronunciation of those around us. Its a subconcious thing and most people aren't aware.

I know Actors can probably shift their accents with ease. The average person, however, usually keeps what they have but it tends to blend with who they're around.

 
Old 06-26-2007, 09:30 PM
 
Location: Kentucky
6,749 posts, read 19,961,298 times
Reputation: 2129
I dunno if that is true either. I recently went to bardstown Kentucky to the Civil War museum. The woman that worked there had an accent that definately wasn't southern so I asked her if she was from there. She smiled and said no, that she was from Pittsburg(I think) and though she had been there 30 years never lost the accent. I read somewhere that you keep the accent you gain during your "formative" years. Aren't those also the Sesame Street years?
 
Old 06-27-2007, 12:01 AM
 
Location: Richmond
1,489 posts, read 8,127,312 times
Reputation: 698
Quote:
Originally Posted by missymomof3 View Post
I dunno if that is true either. I recently went to bardstown Kentucky to the Civil War museum. The woman that worked there had an accent that definately wasn't southern so I asked her if she was from there. She smiled and said no, that she was from Pittsburg(I think) and though she had been there 30 years never lost the accent. I read somewhere that you keep the accent you gain during your "formative" years. Aren't those also the Sesame Street years?
Oh maybe so- but thats the funny thing. When northerners move South, they seem to keep their yankee twangs. But when southerners move north they lose their drawls right fast. At least most do. It surprises me how quickly a southerner can lose their native tongue.

I had a girlfriend who spent a summer in Chicago and she came home with such a heavy nasal Chicago accent. I told her knock that stuff off around me.

That being said, a person can actually make a concious effort to change their accent. Its not set in stone.
But it takes such effort and consistancy over time to change that most people don't bother.
 
Old 06-27-2007, 12:16 AM
 
Location: St. Louis, MO
3,742 posts, read 6,911,780 times
Reputation: 660
Quote:
Originally Posted by vasinger View Post
Thats simply because of location. Kentucky has less transplants, and less industry from outside. But to me is not quite like the Old South as is Virginia.

The accents are mountain and twangy, not drawls like Virginia.

But I think most Southerners today are losing their distinctive regional accents.

I have been to Deep South and even there the younger generation sounds less and less Southern than they did before.

Richmond Southern Lite?

Hardly. The New York times even did an article about how Richmond is southern to the core in every regard from cuisine, to architecture and culture.

Old Richmonders pride themselves on their gracious manners and fine living.

There's magnolias and dogwoods on every corner.

Virginia is changeing and is not as Southern as it has been , but Virginia's history and culture quite frankly surpasses Kentucky in all respects.

And I would disagree with your assesment of Southest VA. Southwest Virginia is more mountain, and I don't consider representative of true Virginia culture. The real Southern areas of Virginia are Richmond and Charlottesville and Danville around South Boston. And also the Shenandoah Valley

And yes, even in Northern Virginia today you can get BBQ, grits, sweet tea, and spoonbread and other southern favorites.
You can get BBQ anywhere in the United States, even if it does taste better in the south, which I agree it does, and if Cracker Barrels or Waffle Houses exist in areas in the country out of the Southern United states you can find plenty of "Southern favorites." Northern Virginia for all its history leans more toward the Northeast i'd argue compared to the rest of Virginia which is definitely more Southern. And btw, Kentucky is definitely a Southern state culturally, no matter what kind of arguments about its history are made. I'll be damned if Kentucky is a Northern state.
 
Old 06-27-2007, 08:08 AM
 
Location: Kentucky
6,749 posts, read 19,961,298 times
Reputation: 2129
I really think it's sad that people lose that. When I was in college here in Louisville, my Public Speaking teacher would dock us for using the term y'all. I said.. How are you going to take points off for y'all? This is Kentucky! Needless to say I lost points a few times.Even my kids talk different than I do and it drives me crazy sometimes! I think part of the charm in meeting people from other places is learning their culture and not trying to just blend us all together.
 
Old 06-27-2007, 08:18 AM
 
Location: St. Louis, MO
3,742 posts, read 6,911,780 times
Reputation: 660
I just discovered something that is quite pleasing and at the same time surprising. Apparantly sweet tea really is no longer becoming regional and McDonald's is beginning to offer sweet tea in the Midwest finally. Was just at a McDonald's in St. Louis and of all things...sweet tea was on the menu! A week ago it was not!
 
Old 06-27-2007, 08:25 AM
 
Location: NJ
12,284 posts, read 31,785,754 times
Reputation: 5225
Quote:
Originally Posted by missymomof3 View Post
I really think it's sad that people lose that. When I was in college here in Louisville, my Public Speaking teacher would dock us for using the term y'all. I said.. How are you going to take points off for y'all? This is Kentucky! Needless to say I lost points a few times.Even my kids talk different than I do and it drives me crazy sometimes! I think part of the charm in meeting people from other places is learning their culture and not trying to just blend us all together.
i had to go to speech therapy in college to rid myself of my brooklyn/nj accent. of course i didn't think i had one at the time, but now listening to recordings of myself back then makes me want to vomit. i'm so thankful it's gone now. it's probably a matter of sounding educated, not "blending".
 
Old 06-27-2007, 08:28 AM
 
3,161 posts, read 8,100,467 times
Reputation: 2385
Quote:
Originally Posted by vasinger View Post
Oh maybe so- but thats the funny thing. When northerners move South, they seem to keep their yankee twangs.
Not entirely true. My brother and sister in laws moved from upstate NY to North Carolina about 10 years ago...they both sound like they were born and raised in the south!
 
Old 06-27-2007, 08:40 AM
 
Location: Kentucky
6,749 posts, read 19,961,298 times
Reputation: 2129
[quote=tahiti;959986 it's probably a matter of sounding educated, not "blending".[/QUOTE]

I think it is sad you can't do both. How come you can't be taken seriously if you have an accent? We don't expect foreigners to take classes to change theirs do we? Why do we have to change ours? I don't have a thick accent (I don't think) but have been teased about the way I talk several times. I have been told I talk "so Kentucky" whatever that means but would I want to lose that? Heck no!
 
Old 06-27-2007, 09:27 AM
 
396 posts, read 910,857 times
Reputation: 403
When I was in elementary school in Illinois, everyone had to take a speech class where we were taught how to properly pronounce words and letters (without any type of accent).

Also, at college in Kentucky, I had a course called Business Communications. Part of this course was learning to alter the way that you speak so as to match the accent and speaking style of those to whom you are talking. It's supposed to help you to more quickly develop a rapport.

It's a sad fact in the bussiness world that if you talk like "Zeke from the creek" some will not take you seriously. The same can be said for height, race, sex etc... It's just that your speaking style is one of the few things that you can actually change.
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