Date: Wed, 11 Sep 1996 10:30:49 -0400

From: Mary Brown Zeigler engmez[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]PANTHER.GSU.EDU

Subject: Re: Questions from inside: Southern accents

In July, a few weeks before the Olympics, I talked with some British

broadcasters who had the same question "Is the Southern accent dying out

or homogenizing?" My response to him at that time was "No." For several

reasons, Southern and all the many varieties of Southern are not dying

out because of the influx of Northerners into the South. One: there are

certainly more Southerners than Northerners here; there contact with us

will cause them to become more like us than we like them, unless of

course, there is active resistance.

Two: Southerners who like being Southerners will keep on talking in a

way that represents them as such. ch

Mary B. Zeigler

Georgia State University

Department of English


Atlanta, GA 30303

(404) 651-2900

On Tue, 10 Sep 1996, Allan Metcalf wrote:

An inmate at Alabama State Prison sends a note with these questions:

"I have a question concerning dialects in the U.S. In the last few years

I've noticed a change in the speech of students in suburban schools. There is

not a 'Southern' accent anymore at these schools. It sounds as if it were

homogenized with other dialects around the country. Do you have any

information on this phenomenon?

"Another question I would like to ask. What happened to the old Aristocrat

Southern accent? Thank you for your time."

These seem reasonable questions to raise on ADS-L. If anyone has good

answers, I'll send them on to the questioner. - Allan Metcalf