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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more



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Subject: Not picking up accent of new language
Question: What are the reasons why some people never pick up the accent when they learn a new language and speak it for many years?

I know well-educated people from non-English-speaking countries who have lived in the US for 4+ decades, and who speak fluent English constantly every day.

They rarely speak their first language, yet they retain an accent so thick they can be difficult to understand.

Is there a kind of tone-deafness to accents?

From: Archie Legerman
Date: 29-Aug-2012
Replies:
  1. Re: Not picking up accent of new language    Madalena Cruz-Ferreira     (30-Aug-2012)
  2. Re: Not picking up accent of new language    Anthea Fraser Gupta     (02-Sep-2012)
  3. Re: Not picking up accent of new language    Nancy J. Frishberg     (30-Aug-2012)
  4. Re: Not picking up accent of new language    Geoffrey Richard Sampson     (31-Aug-2012)

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