Although slightly off-topic, these five minutes are just too good and interesting to leave unposted. Aired on BBC’s Newsnight, this report illustrates how some famous Britons have changed their accents over the course of time.
The way we speak tells us so much more about us than one might think. Being a tool for creating authenticity, inclusion or exclusion from a speaker community, accents are a powerful, tricky, little thing. Non-native speakers often struggle hard to sound as British or as American as possible. Institutions such as the London Speech Workshop offer, amongst others, courses to ‘soften a regional accent or a foreign one‘. But which accent should we use as a role model? (Read the post on Setting Standards for more information on this issue) How do politicians use accents and for what reasons? Has Beckham really started to talk posh? And what about his spouse Victoria aka Posh Spice? As part of a study investigating the impact of certain circumstances on speech, the way the Beckhams talk was investigated. Find out more here!