Re: Blackett English

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Posted by Adam Quinan on October 18, 2003 at 11:15:11 from user Adam.

In Reply to: Re: Blackett English posted by Mike Dennis on October 18, 2003 at 07:41:44:

In Ransome's 1930s England, Nancy's mother tongue accent would have been RP if her parents were of the class depicted, regardless of where they came from. It was perfectly possible for people to have an accent which differed from the local working class accent.

After all Ransome himself was born in Leeds in Yorkshire and recordings that I have heard show absolutely no sign of a Leeds accent. Ransome's family were middle class academics and he would have spoken RP as his "local" accent.

My grandmother was Irish born and bred, daughter of a country doctor, but she had no trace of an Irish accent unless she chose to put one on. She was brought up speaking "proper" RP English it was her native accent. I don't know what accent my great grandparents learned first in Ireland but habitually they used RP in later life (according to my father who knew them when young) as that was the socially acceptable accent for their station and they would have made very sure that my grandmother and her siblings spoke with an RP accent.

My parents were brought up in India of the Empire and England but never developed any regional accent, their parents spoke RP, so they learned it at their mother's knee and spoke the same way.

Why would Nancy be any different? Would she be ashamed of her parents' accent? Or would she be able to imitate a Lakeland accent when she wanted to but spoke normally (for her family's class and position) most of the time?

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