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February 09, 2011

Japanese prefer Glaswegian accents...

Teaching-English-in-Japan-Education-Glasgow" Glaswegians have the most attractive accent for Japanese speakers of English, a new study by Northumbria University has found. For a recently published book, Robert McKenzie, senior lecturer in sociolinguistics at the university, questioned more than 500 Japanese students of English to study how worldwide perceptions of the English language are changing.

The six accents under consideration were from Alabama and Ohio in America, the Glasgow dialect, Scottish standard English, moderately-accented Japanese English and heavily-accented Japanese English. The four native varieties of English were rated as most prestigious under the social status category.

An online poll of over 2,000 Japanese people by in 2006 revealed that Japanese consider British English to be the "sexiest".

Reported by: Russell Willis

See Also:
Dr. Robert McKenzie
The Social Psychology of English as a Global Language
British English accent the sexiest

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What an odd study: no Japanese would choose either moderately or heavily-accented Japanese English and this could not have been a secret to the researchers which leaves only the southern and mid-western American accents v the two Scottish accents. WTF? This study is an embarrassment.

It is hardly a secret that Japanese prefer the status that anything remotely associated with the Queen's English (whether it is the Queen's English or not - a Scottish accent for example, makes no difference) confers.

I'm very glad to know my hometown's accent is at last getting the serious recognition it deserves. There are actually a couple of videos on Youtube where Scots intellectuals ably make a strong case for the Glaswegian lilt being promoted in status to something akin to the formerly revered but now anachronistic 'RP' ideal. Non native speakers of English could do worse than attempt to emulate the Glasgow
linguistic model.


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