Date: Thu, 8 Feb 1996 12:21:52 -0500 From: "M. Lynne Murphy" <104LYN[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]MUSE.ARTS.WITS.AC.ZA> Subject: deceiving appearances thanks to those who helped out on my plea for the source of a _chronic of higher ed_ article on perceptions of foreign t.a. accents. i've now discovered why i couldn't find it in the _chronicle_: the article was in _lingua franca_ (nov/dec 93). and instead of filing it under "language and racism", i'd filed it under phonology. it was just pure luck that today i was looking for phonology bulletin-board material and found it. the study was by donald rubin of univ. of georgia. for those who are interested, a study on race-effects in teacher perception of students' communication abilities (to turn the tables) by williams (1973) is discussed in fasold's _sociolinguistics of society_--so there are a couple of citations on prejudice-influences on comprehension. back on the anecdotal level, i've a chinese-american friend from the chicago suburbs whose mechanical engineering students at illinois write on her evaluations that her chinese accent is too strong (she is a monolingual english speaker). here, i found that if i apologize for my american accent, the ESL students complain that they can't understand me because of my accent. if i don't apologize, they don't realize that i'm not south african and do not check the "can't understand because of accent" box on my evaluation forms. (but even stranger are the numbers of native english speakers here who think i'm british, australian, german, or insist that i must be canadian because americans don't talk like me.) thanks everyone for your help. lynne --------------------------------------------------------------------- M. Lynne Murphy 104lyn[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] Department of Linguistics phone: 27(11)716-2340 University of the Witwatersrand fax: 27(11)716-8030 Johannesburg 2050 SOUTH AFRICA