September 14, 2012

Lost in Pronunciation

Paris Signs

Imagine you were born in France and as an adult you move to, let's say Alabama, where you learn to speak English.

Obviously you already have an accent when you speak English, because you are French after all. However, because you're living in Alabama, you pick up bit of a southern twang in your speech without even realizing it.

Nine years later you move to, let's say Oregon, where the locals hear your French-accented-English-with-a-southern-twang and start correcting your pronunciation.

Of almost every other word you say.

Words that you thought you had been pronouncing correctly all along because nobody in the south ever corrected you.

And it isn't that your pronunciation is wrong, so to speak.
But they think it's wrong because they have a different accent from the accent that you've picked up over the last decade.

Welcome to my life.

I think I should add that as annoying as it is sometimes, I do appreciate my coworkers and friends taking an interest in my learning process. I also have the opportunity to correct their English from time to time, which I happily do!

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