Question About Accents

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Six Fingers
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Question About Accents

Postby Six Fingers » Mon Apr 05, 2010 7:46 am UTC

If a British couple moves to the United States, and they have a kid, does the child grow up with a British, or American accent...or something in between?

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Lazar
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Re: Question About Accents

Postby Lazar » Mon Apr 05, 2010 8:07 am UTC

I'm pretty sure the kid would have an American accent, because this would be the medium for all their social interaction from early childhood. The issue is more pronounced when the parents speak a different language, and the child effectively grows up as a native speaker of English; but in any case, peers have a huge influence on linguistic development. The child would have no incentive to speak with a British accent.
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Re: Question About Accents

Postby Dave_Wise » Mon Apr 05, 2010 10:01 am UTC

American. What's the point in moving to the states if you don't get to acquire a sexy, ideologically suspect mid atlantic accent?
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Ianto47
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Re: Question About Accents

Postby Ianto47 » Tue Apr 06, 2010 12:44 am UTC

I have a cery strong Welsh accent, but my two sons are indistinguishable from any other Southern California youths. I know people with strong european accents whose children grow up completely Americanized in speech. The only exceptions are children from south and central America who live in neighborhoods with a similar ethnic majority.
So it has to be said that peer pressure not parental influence, determines accent.
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extrablue
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Re: Question About Accents

Postby extrablue » Tue Apr 06, 2010 5:37 pm UTC

American accent, but will randomly through in some weird british words or phrases into conversations. The parents will have some affect. (every proud new englander should know that no one ever ever says E ffect. It is always pronounced Ah ffect.)
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Makri
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Re: Question About Accents

Postby Makri » Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:06 pm UTC

The parents will have some affect.


Well, this is kind of a prerequisite for producing a child, no?
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bluestripe
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Re: Question About Accents

Postby bluestripe » Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:22 pm UTC

Makri wrote:
The parents will have some affect.


Well, this is kind of a prerequisite for producing a child, no?



AHAHA! Linguistic humor is the best.

I was born in Australia but moved to the US when I was four. My accent changed pretty quick, but there are still some hints of Aussie at times. Mostly lexical items, but now and then some of my vowels will change at home.

One's accent/dialect, or even native language is always determined by ones peers, not parents.

Sheikh al-Majaneen
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Re: Question About Accents

Postby Sheikh al-Majaneen » Wed Apr 07, 2010 1:17 am UTC

My parents are both from the midwest, but moved here in the south just after I was born.

When I went to kindergarten, I had a strong midwest accent, practically minnesota nice. Now I have a neutral american accent. I'd say its comparable. Expect the kid to sound like charlton heston.

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the_stabbage
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Re: Question About Accents

Postby the_stabbage » Wed Apr 07, 2010 11:15 pm UTC

When I moved to North America I dropped my old accent in about six months; my sibling did that in a year. Now we both speak the same accent, with a few odd word choices eg. "boot"/"trunk".

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Re: Question About Accents

Postby minehowe » Thu Apr 08, 2010 9:20 am UTC

Whereas I was born and brought up in one area with a particular, strong accent, with parents from the other end of the country with a very different accent (take my word for this - outsiders usually think the local accent comes from the wrong country entirely), and have never had the local accent. I don't think I can really be placed within the country using my accent at all, but no-one is going to think I come from here.

So I suppose my answer would be "The kid will probably use the local accent, or a hybrid accent quite close to it, but results may vary." :wink:


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