Saturday, March 1, 2008

More on Indian English Accents

I am highlighting a comment that I received recently (February 27, 2008) from a New Zealander. My previous post on the topic of prejudice against Indian English has attracted some attention since last year. I fully expect that, with China and India containing nearly half the world's population, their English accents (should English remain the international lingua franca) will be familiar and unremarkable in the future. Instead of the giggles I sometimes get from European students when they hear Indians speak in a movie (I love 'Spellbound' and 'A Passage to India'), for example, people will begin to admire the accent, thinking it's cool-sounding.

Today many students studying for the Cambridge examinations really don't like the British English accent, saying that American English is 'cooler.' How ironic is that? This is quite the opposite of what I observed in academia a few decades ago, where if you had a British accent - even an acquired or pseudo-British accent, you definitely had an advantage in getting an academic position here. Other Americans love French accents...

So, I definitely agree with maxqnzs. Indians as well as speakers of other Englishes should be proud of their accents. They add color and flavor to daily conversations, and it would be unimaginably dull to live in a world without them.

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