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  1. #1
    dervast is offline Member
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    Default pronunciation vs accent

    Hello :)
    I would like to know what is the difference between pronunciation and accent?
    If I accentuate(write verb?) the works wrongly.. then I have a bad pronunciation or a bad accent?

    I would like to thank you in advance for your help.
    Best Regards
    Alex.

  2. #2
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Default Re: pronunciation vs accent

    Quote Originally Posted by dervast View Post
    Hello :)
    I would like to know what is the difference between pronunciation and accent?
    If I accentuate(write verb?) the works wrongly.. then I have a bad pronunciation or a bad accent?

    I would like to thank you in advance for your help.
    Best Regards
    Alex.
    Neither. If you are writing, you have neither pronounciation or an accent.

    Pronunciation = how a word is said/spoken.

    Accent = the specific characteristics of a person's voice, based on region, nationality etc; a mark on a letter (see below)


    You said "If I accentuate(write verb?) the works wrongly..."

    First, I think you meant "words", not "works".

    Second, "to accentuate" means to intensify or to emphasise. However, it does also mean "to mark with an accent", but we don't use accents in written English. We stress specific syllables but they are not marked in the written words. The only "marks" that are used in written English are punctuation marks.
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 24-Jun-2010 at 09:44. Reason: Typo

  3. #3
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Default Re: pronunciation vs accent

    Quote Originally Posted by dervast View Post
    Hello :)
    I would like to know what is the difference between pronunciation and accent?
    If I accentuate(write verb?) the works wrongly.. then I have a bad pronunciation or a bad accent?

    I would like to thank you in advance for your help.
    Best Regards
    Alex.
    If you put the accent wrongly on a word because you don't know the correct pronunciation, e.g. saying 'between' instead of 'between', that's a pronunciation problem.
    If you know exactly how natives say 'between', but when you say it, the word sounds non-native, that's a question of accent.

    But that's a somewhat artificial classification. If you nominate one accent as "correct", then any accent that differs from it is mispronounced with respect to the index accent.

  4. #4
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Default Re: pronunciation vs accent

    I have now realised that I didn't realise that when you said "(write verb)", you actually meant "Is this the right verb?"

    I thought you were "writing" the verb "accentuate".

    I now understand and agree entirely with what Raymott said!


  5. #5
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    Default Re: pronunciation vs accent

    I think, generally speaking, if a group of people (from the same region, the same socio-economic class, etc.) pronounce things in largely the same way, they have the same accent.

    If an actor is playing someone from the deep South in the US, but sometimes he pronounces words the way they do in the South and sometime he pronounces them in the correct manner for someone from New England, he is not necessarily mis-pronouncing words, but he is doing a terrible job with the accent.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  6. #6
    crazYgeeK is offline Member
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    Default Re: pronunciation vs accent

    Hi all who is English native speaker, I have one more question about pronunciation and wish all of you to answer it as a useful help to me.
    I know some words have various meanings and functions in sentence when each one of them is pronounced on different ways. Almost of others has no changes in meaning when being pronounced on this way or that way. My question is how important it is to pronounce them correctly? Can you understand when I pronounce them with no accents or with accent on all syllables? Am I right when supposing that the pronunciation with correct accents ( I mean the accents in a word not in a sentence) is not necessary if you speak out your words slowly. But when speaking normally or quickly, it is necessary to express your words fluently that the listeners can still understand well, because you can't speak normally or quickly with accent on all syllables of the word, especially the long words such as "anthropomorphism". Is this opinion right?
    In other words, the pronunciation with correct accents is enough to make all listeners understand well.
    Please discuss with me in this problem and make it clear.
    Thank you so much!
    Last edited by crazYgeeK; 24-Jun-2010 at 20:04. Reason: correct the wrong word 'pronunciate' to the right 'pronounce'

  7. #7
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Default Re: pronunciation vs accent

    Quote Originally Posted by crazYgeeK View Post
    Hi all who is English native speaker, I have one more question about pronunciation and wish all of you to answer it as a useful help to me.
    I know some words have various meanings and functions in sentence when each one of them is pronunciated on different ways. Almost of others has no changes in meaning when being pronunciated on this way or that way. My question is how important it is to pronunciate them correctly? Can you understand when I pronunciate them with no accents or with accent on all syllables? Am I right when supposing that the pronunciation with correct accents ( I mean the accents in a word not in a sentence) is not necessary if you speak out your words slowly. But when speaking normally or quickly, it is necessary to express your words fluently that the listeners can still understand well, because you can't speak normally or quickly with accent on all syllables of the word, especially the long words such as "anthropomorphism". Is this opinion right?
    In other words, the pronunciation with correct accents is enough to make all listeners understand well.
    Please discuss with me in this problem and make it clear.
    Thank you so much!
    The simple answer is that you need to get the stress right to be understood. If you pronounce "appeal" as "apple", or "a tomato" as "atoməto" for example, you are asking a lot of the hearer.

  8. #8
    Barb_D's Avatar
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    Default Re: pronunciation vs accent

    This is an interesting question.

    For me, what I hear is more important than what my eyes see, sometimes, even if I'm just reading in my head.

    I may make the typo "hear" for "here" or "your" for "you're" because I'm typing what I hear in my head. So I may have an easier time understanding your written "conscious" for "conscience" than your mis-pronounced word.

    For example, in my accent, a RECK-erd (record) is a noun. To ruh-CORD (also record) is the verb. If you tell me you have to create a ruh-CORD of who finished first, second, and third in each event at a swim meet, I'll probably have no trouble with that. But oddly, if you say "I have to RECKerd the winners" I may have to ask you to repeat that or say it again in my head to figure that out what you are doing to the winners.

    On the other hand, if you say "PHO-toe-grapher" instead of "pho-TOG-rapher" I'll have no trouble, because "PHO-toe-graph" is so linked to what a "pho-TOG-rapher" does.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  9. #9
    crazYgeeK is offline Member
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    Default Re: pronunciation vs accent

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    The simple answer is that you need to get the stress right to be understood. If you pronounce "appeal" as "apple", or "a tomato" as "atoməto" for example, you are asking a lot of the hearer.
    I think I would never pronounce "appeal" as "apple". That's wrong at all. I mean the mistakes in pronoucing accents. To "appeal", there are some ways of pronunciation:
    1. "APpeal"
    2. "apPEAL"
    3. "APPEAL"
    As following the dictionary, I found the second right. But what about the others? Can you understand when hearing the others? What's your feeling when hearing these? (I mean that do you feel pleasant to listen these mis-pronounced words).
    Thank you!
    Still ask all of you many more.
    Last edited by crazYgeeK; 24-Jun-2010 at 20:08.

  10. #10
    Raymott's Avatar
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    Default Re: pronunciation vs accent

    Quote Originally Posted by crazYgeeK View Post
    I think I would never pronounce "appeal" as "apple".
    It's an example. You're meant to extrapolate from it, as in the 'tomato' example.

    That's wrong at all. I mean the mistakes in pronoucing accents. To "appeal", there are some ways of pronunciation:
    1. "APpeal" That's not correct.
    2. "apPEAL"
    3. "APPEAL" That's not correct.

    As following the dictionary, I found the second right. But what about the others? Can you understand when hearing the others? What's your feeling when hearing these? (I mean that do you feel pleasant to listen these mis-pronounced words).
    Thank you!
    Still ask all of you many more.
    If you pronounced 'appeal' in either of those two ways, some people would understand you. Part of the reason is that 'appeal' and 'appeal' do not sound like other words.

    But that's only one word. I gather that you're talking about all words. Many words are less forgiving if stressed wrongly.
    And it also depends on the words surrounding them.If you say "appeal court", it could sound like 'apple court', or even "apple core" if your /t/ is lazy.

    But, yes, it would be useful for others to give their opinions as well. It would be especially interesting to hear from those who believe stressing a word correctly is not important.

    PS: I'll repeat an anecdote that I told a year of two ago. One rainy winter many years ago, I was in Venice. I went to a shop and asked for a 'soprabito'. Two or three salesmen refused to understand me until someone realised I wanted a soprabito.
    Last edited by Raymott; 25-Jun-2010 at 01:25.

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