1. seelifein69
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    seelifein69 Active Member

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    What does an American accent sound like?

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by seelifein69, Nov 15, 2011.

    I'm fully American, and not fortunate enough to travel like I want to. Sometimes I play around with my friends and talk with accents, and of course every culture has it's own funny views of other cultures.

    But sometimes I sit there and wonder if people over in Italy or England or god knows where make fun of Americans, and how they do it.

    I know people do, we're not too beloved (though I think we love ourselves enough to make up for it, lol)

    So how do you guys poke fun at American culture and accent? And I'll tell you why we poke fun at yours. :]

    Strictly lightheartedness please, not trying to offend anyone, just for my own amusement because I really am fascinated with different cultures.
     
  2. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    this is the only way I can answer this thread.

    when I watch films for example, I find extremely distracting to the point of switching off because I can't actually physically stand it, when there are say an English and American actors talking to each other or cross talking.
    all I can hear is accents going like a clash. I have no idea why I cannot bear it.
    the other second thing I cannot stand is when you take an English actor put him in an American film and give him an American accent andvice versa.
    firstly I do not see the logic behind this process.
    and secondly it sounds so wrong..the movie loses all its credibility so I cannot watch it either.
    haha....:p
     
  3. seelifein69
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    seelifein69 Active Member

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    I hate it when small time English actors just do a major American movie, with a normal American accent, and then after the film they're getting interviewed and they sound like they go from Ben Stiller to Chef Ramsey. So weird.

    I am a big English culture fan. It's also my favorite accent to play around with.
     
  4. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    I agree it is totally weird.
    in the same way that for Dr WHO is all revealed to viewers how it all happens because then you spoil the whole aura/mystery about it which I do not like.
    how do you accent play around with?
    do you mean when talking or writing.
     
  5. CH878
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    CH878 Active Member

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    How do the British talk about American accents? Well, we quite often refer to an American 'drawl', for one thing.
     
  6. Bob Magness
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    Bob Magness Senior Member

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    You are talking about when they are doing a caricature of an American accent right? It reminds me of how Northerners make fun of the way Southerners talk in the the US. They overemphasize the drawl.
     
  7. James Berkley
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    James Berkley Banned

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    Well lets think about this, we find differences between different American accents funny in the states, so why would it not be funny elsewhere. hell the difference between Boston and a New York accent can be funny, and it’s a geographic small difference.
     
  8. m5roberts
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    m5roberts Member

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    I like this topic. I'm from Michigan, which is technically part of the Midwest, but is often called the Great Lakes region. People her don't think they have accents at all. That's silly. Everyone has an accent. One thing that I didn't notice about my own variety of English until I was abroad and had it pointed out to me is that we often times pronounce T's as D's (not in "often," we ignore that T for some reason). For example, when I say "party" it sounds like "pardy". When I say "butter," it sounds like "budder." i'm not even going to get started on the vowels :)

    And since someone brought it up, when I first saw the 9th Doctor, the other characters kept harassing him about his accent. He said he wasn't from earth, and they said "But you sound like you're from the north," and he'd yell out "LOT'S OF PLACES HAVE A NORTH!" I loved that bit. Killed me every time :)
     
  9. Prophetsnake
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    Prophetsnake Contributing Member

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    Peter Sellers did a film in the 60s called after the fox, in which he caricatured an american accent.

    It's very funny even today..

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_y413H8JXtk
     
  10. cobaltblue
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    cobaltblue Member

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    British TV has been filled with American shows for so long that I think the Brits are hugely immune to the American accent. I don't believe the reverse to be true, I think a large percentage of Americans would sit and listen to a Brit talk for hours, even if they're not really saying anything interesting.
    I think everyone has a laugh with accents that are different from their own.. I like talking to my son with an Australian accent, for some reason it totally cracks him up.
    The Noo Joy Zay accent is also quite amusing.
     
  11. rainshine
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    rainshine Senior Member

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    Not of the American accent, just characters from films, my brother does lots of impersonations mainly from the film the God Father which he is a big fan of, One liners from Rocky except he is diabolical at it. and Terminator he also does other celebs like Gordon Ramsay and Billy Conelly.
     
  12. seelifein69
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    seelifein69 Active Member

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    Talking for sure, just messing around with my friends.

    I am from Florida, and I truly believe that I have a straight American, no accent. Southern is easy to do, and I think Minnesota accent is one of my favorites, "don cha noe?"

    Also Canadian accents and Indian ones!

    I watched on TV one time that the British think all American's talk like cowboys and I found that very amusing.
     
  13. seelifein69
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    seelifein69 Active Member

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    I like to do the "Jeremy Clarkson", and I happen to be a huge Top Gear fan, English version only. But he's got a great accent, and I also find Irish and Scottish accents adorable!
     
  14. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I'm from Canada, and I've been living in California for fifteen years. Even now, people tell me I say "oot" for "out". I tell them I say "out", and that Americans say "aout". That's the way it sounds to me. Americans put the "a" in "aout".

    I also have some Canadian vocabulary. At restaurants, I asked for serviettes and got blank stares from the servers. I learned that the word was "napkins". Ah.
     
  15. LordKyleOfEarth
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    LordKyleOfEarth Contributing Member Contributor

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    A friend asked me how to sound more British once. I advised him to soften his vowels. I'd suspect that the opposite is true as well, and that to sound more more American, one needs to sharpen their vowels. Hence the 'aout' suggested above.
     
  16. Prophetsnake
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    Sounding anything is a "How long is a piece of string" thing. Brit accents are, if anything, more varied than US accents.
    The vast majority are unintelligible to people outside the country. Indeed, they're unintelligible to people from other regions sometimes.
    Americans will think this strange but some Brits have difficulty discerning an Irish accent from an American, which gives some idea of the rainbow of dialects there are and how what one hears in another depends on where in the spectrum they lay themselves.

    oh and m5roberts. I lived in De-riot for a couple of years. Michiganders say "headache" like "haddock"
     
  17. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    drawl as in drole in French?
     
  18. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    weird because aout is AUGUST in French. there you go you are writing French. I just thought I'll let you know.
     
  19. FoxPaw
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    FoxPaw Senior Member

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    I like listening to regional accents from the states, as I don't really have one. I've only ever lived in the states for about two years so I people can't place my accent to a specific part of the US, just that it definitely sounds American. XD
     
  20. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    sorry to ask what XD?
    I can't keep up with abbreviations.:(
     
  21. FoxPaw
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    FoxPaw Senior Member

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    Ah, sorry. It's a written-out internet emoticon to show laughing. I'm not a fan of using forum-provided smileys.
     
  22. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    there are too many 'american accents' to list!

    here are just a few:

    southern
    deep southern
    southwestern
    cajun
    northeastern
    new york
    new jersey
    appalachian
    northwestern
    midwestern
    massachusetts
    maine

    and my own [most of the time], 'non-dialectic' westchester, NY ['plain' grammatical english, with no discerneable accent]...
     
  23. Thanshin
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    Thanshin Active Member

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    Allow me to answer this question from a Spanish (from Spain)/French (from France)/English(from UK) speaker point of view. :)

    Anyone that goes even near the United States starts speaking Any Language as if they had a hot potato in their mouth while speaking. French do it in Canada, mexicans in Mexico and Americans in the US. I can't understand why it happens but it's the truth.

    So, American accent, as canadian French and mexican Spanish, sound as if the speaker had to leave empty space in his mouth to hold an object.
     
  24. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    I am so used to American accents that it's a little difficult to be totally objective, I mean, for me to hear them as foreign--but it depends which American accent you are talking about. There's a huge difference even to my ear (I am, or was originally, English) between someone from LA, Austin, Boston, Seattle... No one can say they 'don't have an accent'--of course you do, even if it's standard RP (received pronunciation, i.e. old BBC English).

    A big and fairly common difference between the different southern/northern English accents and most southern/northern American accents is the way they pronounce long/short vowels, specially 'a'. I have to say I can't understand why the vowel in 'John' is pronounced by most Americans so that it's the same as 'Jan' making the two names one and the same. Other than that small pet gripe, I love Californian and Texan accents (I guess because I prefer long drawn vowels in either British or US accents)!

    I particularly love the way in southern (British) English there is a distinct vowel difference between the 'a' in 'can' and 'can't', and even when my accent starts to slide into mid-Atlantic that's one trait I'll never lose.
     
  25. m5roberts
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    m5roberts Member

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    Hmmm, I've never heard it said that way before. Maybe that's specific Detroit...I just can't imagine it being said commonly. But thank you for calling us "Michiganders." Every time our last governor called us "Michiganians" it made me cringe a little.
     

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