Thursday, April 14, 2022

My linguistic autobiography: Learning English as a child in the US and the UK

My linguistic autobiography begins with the English I learned as a child. I was born in the United States in Detroit, Michigan, and spoke American English there and in Palo Alto and Menlo Park, California, until my family moved to Leamington Spa in the United Kingdom when I was nine years old. There, the kids asked me to "speak American", but when I went back to the US, I had a strong Midlands accent, which I quickly lost again in our new town of Toledo, Ohio. Yet even though I had relearned my Midwestern American nasal vowels, I could reproduce my British vowels for many years after we left Leamington Spa. (Andrew Shields, #111words, 14 April 2022)

No comments: