Date: Mon, 22 Nov 1993 21:04:23 -0700 From: Rudy Troike Subject: Re: Diversity of accents Response to Dennis Preston's note: Don't forget the 'parachute effect' in modern conditions, when Chicago vowels jump to Phoenix without, as in olden days, traveling across the intervening farm and ranch country. It is almost certainly NOT the media which are responsible, since they are often the LAST to reflect such changes. But change is occurring constantly at all social levels; which mutations survive and spread is often a matter of the particular local circumstances. Were it not for the influence of the upper class in post-Norman England, we would not have so many French words incorporated into English, and would still be using more of the good o Old English vocabulary. It would make German easier to learn. Older upper- class usages in turn survive in relic areas. Unfortunately, American English IS being homogenized at the lexical level, with so few people left on the farm, and most people getting 'school-larning', if not in school, via their 7 hours a day of TV and the supermarket. --Rudy Troike