Friday, July 21, 2017

Fear of Hiberno-Irish

My greatest—perhaps only—fear about living in Ireland is that I will return home with a ridiculous accent, or a vocabulary full of shite, and feck, and me hole. I don't mind those things, but they don't belong in an American mouth. 

Just listen to these North Americans reading scripts of common conversations about politics, weather, household chores, and leisure activities. 


Try listening to Americans trying to say Irish slang, if you can stand it.  

Most Americans can identify an Irish accent when they hear it, but they don't know which accent it is. When Irish people speak with each other, they know where they're from. 

This comedian is demonstrating different accents, and playing with regional and class stereotypes that I don't yet comprehend. 

In the US, most prejudices are formed by what a person looks like, and not as much their accent. ("All southerners sound stupid" would be an exception.) In Ireland, where physical differences between the locals are more subtle, class and regional differences are heard in the language. 

This skit from The Savage Eye illustrates the concept pretty well. 

I have Artemis to speak American with, so I definitely have help there. And I hope she would ridicule me if t'ings go too far. 

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