The LINGUIST List is dedicated to providing information on language and language analysis, and to providing the discipline of linguistics with the infrastructure necessary to function in the digital world. LINGUIST is a free resource, run by linguistics students and faculty, and supported primarily by your donations. Please support LINGUIST List during the 2016 Fund Drive.
Ask-A-Linguist Message Details
|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?|