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Old 10-08-2011, 11:45 PM
 
Location: Florida Gulf Coast
4,083 posts, read 5,496,975 times
Reputation: 6407

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Quote:
Originally Posted by PennKid View Post
I think it's a real shame that you are ashamed of you accent. I understand that it's associated with a working-class segment of the population, but many of those working-class people have gone on to have great lives and have been proud to be so audibly tagged as Philadelphians. Does this mean you are ashamed of Philadelphia as well?

And as regards the original question, no, Rocky Balboa does not have a Philadelphia accent, and it's always been my pet peeve that Philadelphia-based film characters are given a generic 'Noo Yawk' accent. Even Rocky's "YO"- his most iconic line- is mispronounced. The vowel is not made with a rounded mouth, as he does it, but instead goes through a long and pronounced dipthong, a glide from one vowel to another, more like

"YEAEAEAEOOOOUUUU"
Don't know why this thread has been revived, but anyway, to answer your question, PennKid -- if you've ever seen any of my other posts, you'd know I'm the last person to be ashamed of my hometown. In fact, I just posted a whole list in the "Advantages v. Disadvantages of Phila." thread -- however, I posted only "advantages". I did not say I was ashamed of my accent, I said I hate it. It is not one that is pleasing to the ear, such as a soft N'awlins drawl or the lilt of an Irish brogue, which is why so many in TV and radio work hard to lose it. You're right, with the nasal-sounding Philadelphia vowels, "Yo" sounds more like "Yeow". So no, I do not like hearing the sound of my own voice because I think it sounds very harsh and common. However, that doesn't mean I don't like hearing the accent at all -- I think it fits perfectly with the passion and intensity of our residents. I especially love hearing it when I'm living or visiting another state -- it always makes me feel like home.
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Old 10-09-2011, 01:30 AM
 
Location: University City, Philadelphia
22,583 posts, read 11,763,332 times
Reputation: 15398
Quote:
Originally Posted by gwillyfromphilly View Post
The Philly and New York accents sound completely different. They are in different dialect regions. The same can be said for North and South Jersey.
I disagree. I think the accents of NY, NJ, and Philly are very similar ... but there are variations of accents even within the city limits of NYC as there are in Philly.

My theory is this: your accent has a lot to do with your ethnicity. The so-called "South Philly" accent (with the 'Yo' thing going) is to me an Urban Northeastern Italian-American accent. This accent and speech pattern is similar to what is spoken by Italian-Americans in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, in the Jersey Shore communities, in parts of North-East Philly and South Philly even down to Wilmington's Little Italy. Think of the cast of "Everybody Loves Raymond" (the actor Peter Boyle, who played Raymond's Dad, is from West Philly and went to my parish: St. Francis De Salles) or the cast of "Jersey Shore."

African-American Philly folks in Philly sound like African Americans in other big cities here in the northeast ... there are still southern inflections because so many migrated from the South in early 20th century and especially during the Great Depression.

Jews in Philly sound like Jews from New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, etc. Think Jerry Seinfeld, Woody Allen, Steven Spielberg, (but not so much Barbra Streisand who has a distinctly "Brooklyn" inflection). The Jewish accent has rising and lowering inflections that is influenced by Yiddish.

Philadelphians of Irish descent, in my view, do not sound like the other groups I mentioned.

Hispanics, especially Mexicans, have Spanish influences in their accents ... even if they are second or third generation Philadelphians.

On top of everything else, education has a lot to do with how you sound. Professional affluent folks who live in Bryn Mawr do not sound like blue collar working class people from Bristol.

This is just my opinion. I may be wrong. I am not an expert on linguistics. These represent carefully considered observations on my part.

BTW people from New Jersey do NOT say New Joisey. It sounds more like New Jearsey.
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Old 10-09-2011, 05:21 AM
 
Location: NYC
3,246 posts, read 4,547,472 times
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I think this guy did a pretty decent sum-up of the Mid-Atlantic accent (in an exhaustive and somewhat entertaining series of videos), and makes a pretty good case for the Philadelphia accent having more in common with the Baltimore accent than the New York accent.


PhillyTawk: Overview of Mid-Atlantic English, Part 1 - YouTube

That said, a lof of generalizations need to be made in order to come to any meaningful consensus. And to that end, for the most part whenever people talk about this stuff, they are generally only talking about the accents of blue collar white people in those regions.
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Old 10-09-2011, 01:57 PM
 
1,030 posts, read 2,921,266 times
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This would be more like Rocky from Kensington:

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Old 10-09-2011, 03:44 PM
 
Location: Vineland, NJ
8,385 posts, read 9,945,414 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Clark Park View Post
I disagree. I think the accents of NY, NJ, and Philly are very similar ... but there are variations of accents even within the city limits of NYC as there are in Philly.
Though the fact remains that they are in 2 distinct dialect areas, I can see were your coming from. When my Uncle visited me from Jacksonville, FL he said he cannot tell the difference between the Philly and Boston accent. So I understand the point your trying to make.
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Old 10-09-2011, 05:27 PM
 
Location: The Present
2,016 posts, read 3,560,188 times
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aa's in Philly have a distinct accent, you hear more of a mixture of south/mid Atlantic in there. Some things are similar to Ny aa accents but you can easily tell the difference.
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Old 10-09-2011, 05:53 PM
 
Location: Vineland, NJ
8,385 posts, read 9,945,414 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wordlife View Post
aa's in Philly have a distinct accent, you hear more of a mixture of south/mid Atlantic in there. Some things are similar to Ny aa accents but you can easily tell the difference.
Definitely not a southern mixture. That's a little extreme. Blacks in Philly have a Northern accent. African Americans in Philly, as well as the New York and Boston area are arguably the furthest removed from the Southern dialect.
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Old 10-10-2011, 02:58 PM
 
Location: The Present
2,016 posts, read 3,560,188 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gwillyfromphilly View Post
Definitely not a southern mixture. That's a little extreme. Blacks in Philly have a Northern accent. African Americans in Philly, as well as the New York and Boston area are arguably the furthest removed from the Southern dialect.
No I'm not talking about a direct southern accent, but pieces of that accent affect how we say or phrase particular things.

for instance my grandparents came to the northeast from the south (in the 40s), in the gen that my parents were born (the 60s) you can definitely hear the mixture. Compared to when I was born in the early 80s, the sound is non existent but a lot of the phrasing will come out depending on the situation.

I would say the same would go for aa's in Boston as well. The thing is you have black families that did not migrate up north, they trace their lineage upon entering the country right at Phila, NY etc. In those cases it is well removed from having a southern influence.


the accent cats down there is distinct and its kinda funny when you hear a word like "hoagie" ha ha ha!
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Old 10-11-2011, 06:12 PM
 
1 posts, read 7,390 times
Reputation: 10
Default Nah, that's not philly

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiger Beer View Post
I recently had the chance to drive in and around Philadelphia...and I love you city by the way.

However, I was flipping around the dial, and stopped on a call-in sports show. All kinds of callers, but a couple of them, and one in particular, had a VERY strong accent...sounded almost identical to Rocky Balboa character of the Rocky movies.

So, I always thought that was a fictional accent...but I guess that is an actual accent heard in Philly then? I'm just surprised! Either that, or the caller was just putting it on, and the sports talk show host didn't call him on it!
Nah, the caller was just puting it on. It's more slang than accent. You might hear it in some pockets of South Philly but that's about it. Anyway, Sylvester Stallone speaks perfect English. He messed up on his Rocky Balboa slang when he pronounced Horn & Hardart correctly. Like most Philadelphians, he should have said Horn & Hardet.

Last edited by TheALAN; 10-11-2011 at 06:16 PM.. Reason: Add a word.
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Old 10-11-2011, 11:03 PM
 
Location: Florida Gulf Coast
4,083 posts, read 5,496,975 times
Reputation: 6407
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheALAN View Post
Nah, the caller was just puting it on. It's more slang than accent. You might hear it in some pockets of South Philly but that's about it. Anyway, Sylvester Stallone speaks perfect English. He messed up on his Rocky Balboa slang when he pronounced Horn & Hardart correctly. Like most Philadelphians, he should have said Horn & Hardet.
Rocky mentioned Horn & Hardart? LOL! Even though I have a Philly accent, I did not pronounce it the way you say "most" Philly peeps do. In our family, we said "Horn and Har-dirt".
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