Why do words change and disappear?

Language accents are an important part of a person's identity, and using local dialects and dialects can represent a group or a sense of belonging. However, some people lose their accent or dialect during their lifetime, or they change to a different region or group than before.

Jane Setter , a professor of phonetics at the University of Reading in England, explains why the accent of words changes or is lost.

Why some people lose their accents but others don't – linguistic expert

For humans, who are social animals, the accent of words used in conversation with others has an important meaning. However, the accent of spoken language is not necessarily only a physical factor, but the person's conscious or subconscious desires may affect the accent of words.

Setter points out that research shows that a person's accent resembles the accent of the group they belong to at some stage in their lives. 'Accent is a trait that can change. For example, if you move from Australia to the United States for work, you will likely modify your accent slightly, consciously or unconsciously.'

Changing your accent to suit your group may be a desire or need to be better understood and accepted in your new community. In the UK, a quarter of the working class responded that they had been laughed at at work because of their accent, and it seems that many people recognize the need to change their accent.

Acquiring accents to suit your environment is a natural human ability.

Studies with newborns have shown that during the nonverbal crying stage, they contain melodies specific to the environment in which they are raised. From an early age, children pick up the accent of the people they are raising, and eventually speak with the same accent as the people around them.

Even after children are able to speak like adults, their accents continue to change as they grow. For example, Mr. Seter's colleague's child said that after moving from the United States to the southern part of England with his parents and entering school, he began to speak with a 'southern British accent'. Children teach their parents a Southern accent by telling them to speak 'correct English'.

On the other hand, some people say that their accent hardly changes even if the environment changes. For these types of people, the way they speak may be important to their identity. Some people say that matching the accent to the surrounding people and belonging to the group is important for identity, while others say that the accent itself is a component of identity.

Although it is rare, there is also a disease called foreign language accent syndrome, in which the way of speaking suddenly becomes a foreign language accent . The disease is often caused by brain damage, such as stroke or trauma, but a reported case in March 2023 showed no brain abnormalities, indicating that the novel coronavirus infection (COVID-19 ) has also been pointed out.

A rare ``foreign language-like accent syndrome'' where Italians suddenly start speaking with a Canadian accent has been reported, possibly due to the new corona-GIGAZINE

Setter said, ``There are cases where people with foreign-like accent syndrome are discriminated against because they think they are foreigners. I can understand that you are protecting yourself by adjusting your way of speaking to those around you.'

in Science, Posted by log1h_ik