While the average person (like us) realises that there are several American accents, we don’t always know where the people speaking with them originate from and what makes them different.
Erik Singer is a dialect coach, and he specialises in teaching people, like actors, how to adopt a certain accent for a specific role.
The eastern part of the United States has a bigger diversity of accents compared to its western counterpart. That’s because the eastern part has been settled by English speaking people longer, and the extra time a language has to develop, the more accents there will be.
Just like Londoners dropped the rolling of their r’s way back in the 1700s, the fad soon became part of the Boston accent where people still don’t like to roll their r’s.
While New York City itself has a lot of different accents, it’s not because of the different boroughs, and they also don’t differ between the boroughs. The reason for the different accents within one city is because of the different socioeconomic backgrounds, ethnicity and group belonging found in the city.
North Carolina is one of the most linguistically diverse states in the country.
The one accent that we’re probably most familiar with is the general American accent. It doesn’t have a specific regionally distinctive feature and it’s often hard to tell where a person is from when this is the accent they speak with.
Watch the Wired video below for more on the different US accents.
Image credit: Learn English with Tommy