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My dear 1Zumba friend, there has been some talk among students about accents, and how should we deal with some people, who think that their accent is better than others.
First, let us define what an accent is. An accent is “a distinct emphasis given to a syllable or word in speech by stress or pitch”, which could be taught to the person during childhood/adulthood, it doesn’t matter when.
Some people connect it to location or nationality, but this is incorrect, because in the same school, and the same community, you would never find two persons who are identical in the way they talk, even in the same family, each sibling will have a certain way of talk, different from the mother, the father, or the siblings.
People in some parts of India, Pakistan, or any other country can speak English only all through their whole lives. Probably when you hear them, your first thought would be that they lived in Britain or the US, which could be untrue.
Because of the movies’ classification for the way language is expected to be spoken in England, or in Australia, that convey an implicit idea that if you lived in a certain area of the world, you should be speaking in a certain way, which again is wrong.
The truth is that, each one of us has her/his own accent!
No matter how much you try to speak the way others speak, you will always have your own very special way of speaking.
Linguistics is the key for learning more about this subject, which is really very interesting to know about. I studied linguistics and I enjoyed it, including phonology, morphology, phonetics, semantics, syntax, pragmatics, etc..
If you want to know why each one of us has her own way of talking, go deeper into studying the language, but never act like you know everything. Never claim that the way you speak is the best way the language is supposed to be spoken, even if you were a teacher of that language (I don’t think that a teacher would do such a mistake).
Simply it is wrong to make this assumption, and you’ll make an idiot of yourself, if someone well- educated found you claiming that.
Here’s what Garir told us in our last meeting:
“Elay’s family has finally settled in. Now, after the long trek across the country, he faces one more hurdle — the first day of school.
Elay takes a deep breath as he enters a new 9th grade classroom, full of unfamiliar faces and voices.
The teacher senses his awkward isolation and steps forward. “Class, we have a new student who moved here over the summer.” He smiles at Elay. “Would you like to tell us a little bit about where you’re from?”
Elay begins to speak, but a buzz erupts in the classroom before he has finished his first sentence.
“You have a funny accent!”
“Where did you learn to talk?”
“Did you hear how he said his name?”
No one seems to notice Elay’s bewilderment or his withdrawal at the assault on his speech. And no one bothers to acknowledge or address the prejudice reflected in the responses.
Elay’s experience is repeated every day in classrooms across the country. The student from Kentucky who moves to Detroit, the student from Boston who moves to rural Texas, the Native American from the Navajo reservation who moves to Tucson — all are subject to charges that they “talk funny.”
The teacher could have invited him to talk to the class, without referring to “where he was from” part 😡
In brief, nobody talks funny. We all do, if funny means that we do not talk in the same exact way. We should always keep in mind that we learn from each other, and that learning is continuous until the last breath we take in this world.
Do you want to talk more about it? Email us, and we’ll tell you more.
Until we chat some more, here’s our kisses and hugs ❤