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4-03-2012 @ 5:53PM
My husband is originally from Newfoundland. I should point him towards WoW Insider today, to show him just what the rest of the world thinks of Newfoundland.Of course, he loves to tease me about how shocked I was the first time I visited Newfoundland. (Born and spent the elementary school years of my life in Winnipeg, did junior and high school in Ottawa, university in Guelph, and then back to Ottawa to work.) I was totally shocked at: a) the multi-coloured houses as we pulled into Port aux Basques having taken the ferry across from Nova Scotia and b) how everyone kept calling me "my love" and "me dear." Totally freaked me out. And, I hope this doesn't sound racist (because it's not intended to be) but I thought it was very cool that some "visible minorities" had Newfie accents - clearly second- or third-generation Newfoundlanders, so they had the Newfie accent, but were not Caucasian.My husband, being military, has lived all over Canada, so lost his Newfie accent a long time ago - a bit of it comes out when he's drunk, but it's not terribly heavy. His mother and sister, on the other hand, definitely have the accent. He does, however, use some "Newfie-isms" some of which I've picked up. Like the use of "bags" to mean "a lot" of something.
4-03-2012 @ 6:02PM
I don't know that it's racist but it's kinda odd. Doesn't American have second and third generation migrant minorities that presumably speak in an American accent?
4-03-2012 @ 6:20PM
"American" accent.If there is one phrase that is inappropriate, it's this one. There are tons of accents all of the US. People from one state might sound different from another. It's not as "bad" as some European regions, where someone from one end of a region might not be able to understand one from the other, but there is still many accents. I still fail to see what's the "American" accent. Unless people are simply seeing the California accent used in a ton of TV shows, and assume that's how we all talk.
4-03-2012 @ 6:35PM
I've lived in western NY state, west TX, and central AZ... they ALL have different accents.
4-03-2012 @ 6:42PM
Then I see what I actually commented on! XDI meant everyone in the states do, but around here most people (not all) hold on to their accents. I think it's because people don't like to mingle all they much, the Mexicans around here seem to keep to themselves, in some states there is entire Chinatowns where Chinese keep to themselves, etc. I remember being taught growing up how America was the "Great American Melting Pot" but as I've grown older and seen more of it I've kinda come to question that. I love my country, but I do have to say it's full of self imposed segregation.
4-03-2012 @ 7:36PM
He didn't say "the American accent". He said "an American accent". Surely someone from Texas has an American accent, same as someone from Munich has a German accent.I think what Possum was trying to get across was surprise that someone was surprised that someone of ethnicity had a local accent (in this case Newfoundland); and surely people of ethnicities who grow up elsewhere in would have an American accent (local to the area obviously).For instance, in the UK there is a well known Black comedian called Lenny Henry, who has a strong Dudley accent (similar to a Birmingham accent), which is a British accent.
4-03-2012 @ 7:59PM
@Possum: Actually, not so much. Nonwhite American immigrants tend to do one of two things: either develop a unique accent that's influenced by the surrounding accent but clearly distinct (see: California Mexicans, Florida Cubans, Louisiana Cajuns, certain West Coast Asian/Pacific Islander groups) or work very hard to pick up the 'standard' American accent as heard on TV and radio (most African immigrants, Latinos and Asian/Pacific Islanders not living in large ethnically-homogeneous communities).It's very unusual for a nonwhite American to speak with what would generally be recognized as a 'regional' accent. Other ethnic groups, when big enough, can have their own 'regional' accents - Black Americans, for instance (not even an immigrant community except in the same sense that all non-First-Nations are) have a family of accents that varies across regions, as do Mexican-Americans. But an outside listener - say, someone from Vermont - presented with audio of a black Texan speaking is much more likely to hear "black" than "Texas."That's much less true in most of Canada. A black Newfie is pretty much indistinguishable from a white Newfie over the phone, and someone from BC will easily identify both as Newfies.
4-03-2012 @ 8:10PM
One of the first friends I made during university (in Corner Brook, on the west coast of the island) was from Shenzhen, China. She had only been speaking English for about three months before starting school, and learned it in Newfoundland. By the end of our second semester, she had a very distinctive hybrid Newfie/Chinese accent.
4-03-2012 @ 10:16PM
I have always been amazed what the rest of Canadians think of Newfoundland. They almost think it's some strange place and there is nothing like it in the rest of the world or universe. It's really common in Europe to see places like Newfoundand some even have the multicolored houses by the sea. Many places speak like Newfoundland people do as well. Like in England you will see them say ME this and that and use other expressions and accents long forgotten and lost by the rest of Canada. They also use a lot of sayings Newfoundlanders use. Some irish accents also sound like some Newfoundland dialects.
4-04-2012 @ 5:04AM
What Marbles said is what I was getting at. I had no idea that migrant communities in the US didn't develop a local accent, my experience in Australia (we really only have 1 to 2 accents) second or third generation migrants just speak with an Australian accent.
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