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  1. Douglas Santos

    Hi guys, I have a doubt about accents

    Is "British Accent" a standard used only in Great Britain or is it the name of a standard accent in the English Language used in many parts of the world? Can I say, for example, that in some areas of Africa people use the british accent and in some others they use the American accent? I ask you that guys because my "Cambridge International Dictionary of English" shows only two standard of English, by using $ to indicate the American accent and £ to indicate the British accent.

    I do hope my doubt is clearly expressed

    Thanks a lot!!! See You!!!

    • Join Date: Dec 2009
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    Re: Hi guys, I have a doubt about accents

    (Not a teacher)

    I would say the most you could say is whether their accent is 'more like American' or 'more like British'. Non-native speakers who have a perfectly identical British or American accent do exist, and for them it would be appropriate to say they have a British/American accent. Such people normally go through elocution lessons, however; such an accent doesnt come by learning the language.

    Considering the amount of variety and accents within Britain and within the US, I dislike referring to them as British/American accents, however, learners seem to like this distinction.

    There are, of course, large communities where English is widely spoken. South Africa, Austrailia, New Zealand, India, to name a few. I wouldn't express these as being 'more American' or 'more British'. They are simply where they are from.

    Similarly with my fiancée, who is a native Brazilian Portuguese speaker. I would call her accent Brazilian English; it doesn't sound like anything other than her Brazilian accent speaking English words. I would do this for all speakers of English, as there is no doubt that your original accent exists independently from the language you know.

  2. Ouisch's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Mar 2006
    • Posts: 4,142
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    Re: Hi guys, I have a doubt about accents

    The term "British accent" is probably used more in the UK, but that same accent is definitely recognized in the US and is more commonly referred to as an "English accent." Thanks to the popularity of the Crocodile Dundee films in the 1980s, most Americans now also will distinguish between an English accent and an Australian accent.

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