Re: English as a universal language
Bob Taschler (bob_taschler@PUBLICITAS-USA.COM)
Fri, 9 Aug 1996 09:47:45 -0600
>This is one thing about the U.S.A. that intrigues me. Here
>in Australia we have a country covering an area not much
>less than the mainland United States, and yet there are
>only very minor regional variances in word usage or accent.
The U.S.A. probably has more regional differences due to the
large number of immigrants from a large number of countries.
My understanding is that Australia was settled primarily by
English speaking people mostly from the U.K. (Please correct
me if I'm wrong on this point.) Early on, the U.S.A. was
settled not only by the English, but by the Spanish,
Africans, French, Dutch, Swedish, German, Irish, Italian,
Chinese, Mexican, etc., etc., etc.
During the expansion across our country, these groups mixed
and mingled more than one would think. English was their
second language and their children grew up hearing a variety
of foreign accents when English was spoken. Customs and
linguistic patterns were adopted and adapted so one could
fit into the local society so they could prosper.
I wouldn't worry too much about TV changing local speech
patterns. Although few actors on TV have accents, you can
still hear Southern drawls, Brooklyn tough guy accents, and
Boston "pahhk the cahhh" accents. I'd worry more about TV
influencing children on using violence to resolve their
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City