Date: Sat, 29 Jan 1994 11:06:19 -0700


Subject: Stereotyping of Accent on Film/TV

The following note was received from one of my Anglo-Saxonist

colleagues. I thought it might spark some reactions. I haven't thought

about the matter, but maybe it's true. One tends to be more sensitive

to stereotyping of one's own regional variety.

Rudy Troike

The mention of TV reminds me of this little thing (which might start a

fierce debate on ADS-L): Last year some Brit groused in a letter to The

Times (or the Evening Standard?) that in American telly and movie pro-

ductions the bad guy, or the twit or whatever heavy, was the guy with the

English accent. Being in England at the time, I dismissed this complaint

as standard Brit whining about Yanks. Later, back in blighty USA, I

started to take this complaint more seriously. I don't watch enough

television--and I haven't gone to a cinema since the late 1970s--to be

very scientific about all this, but I suss that the grousing Brit might be

quite right.

Carl Berkhout