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"Talking proper" - Lynda Mugglestone

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"Talking proper" - the rise of accent as social symbol
Lynda Mugglestone
Oxford University Press
UK Publication Date

Talking Proper is a history of the rise and fall of the English accent as a badge of cultural, social, and class identity. Lynda Mugglestone traces the origins of the phenomenon in late eighteenth-century London, follows its history through the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and charts its downfall during the era of New Labour. This is a witty, readable account of a fascinating subject, liberally spiced with quotations from English speech and writingover the past 250 years.

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Lynda Mugglestone is News International Lecturer in Language and Communication, University of Oxford and Fellow in English Language and Literature, Pembroke College, Oxford.

What Talking Proper does very well is to trace the process by which spoken Engish came to incorporate the view that a particular way of pronouncing it was superior to any other and should be recognised as the phonetic standard.

John Sturrock, London Review of Books

... a fascinating and authoritative insight into the rise (and fall?) of RP with a valuable, wide-ranging collection of well-researched data that is always clearly and carefully presented.

Linguist List

... there is a commendable effort to ensure that the phonetics is easily accessible to non-experts and so does not constitute a barrier for those with no specialist training in the field.

Linguist List

... much fascinating, carefully researched information about the development of a socially pre-eminent accent in Britain.

Linguist List

... includes an impressive array of quotes from a wide range of sources.

Linguist List

2nd Edition
Keyword Index
English language - Great Britain - Standardization.|English language - Spoken English - Great Britain.|English language - Social aspects - Great Britain.|English language - Variation - Great Britain.|English language - Accents and accentuation.|Speech and social status - Great Britain.|Social classes - Great Britain.|Great Britain - Social life and customs.
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