[lg policy] Why Are Fantasy World Accents British?

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at GMAIL.COM
Sat Mar 31 14:44:36 UTC 2012

 Why Are Fantasy World Accents
Posted by Soulskill <soulskillatslashdotdotorg> on Friday March 30,
from the consolation-prize-for-losing-the-colonies dept.

 kodiaktau writes *"An interesting article from the BBC News Magazine
explores the reasons why most fantasy worlds use British as their primary
accent <http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-17554816>. Citing specific
examples from recent and upcoming shows and movies like Lord of The Rings, The
Hobbit and Game of Thrones, the article concludes British accents are
'sufficiently exotic,' 'comprehensible' and have a 'splash of otherness.'
It would be odd to think of a fantasy world having a New Jersey accent, or
even a Mid-West accent, which tends to be the default for TV and movies in
the U.S., but how do UK viewers feel about having British as a default?
More specifically, what about the range of UK accents, like Scottish,
Welsh, Cockney? The International Dialects of English
Archive<http://web.ku.edu/%7Eidea/europe/england/england.htm>shows at
least nine regional sounds, with dozens of sub-regional
pronunciations in England alone. In the U.S., there have always been many
regional accents<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Regional_vocabularies_of_American_English>that
might be used in interesting ways. Filmmakers should consider looking
at speech accents from other areas of the
world<http://accent.gmu.edu/browse.php>to create more interesting



 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone:  (215) 898-7475
Fax:  (215) 573-2138

Email:  haroldfs at gmail.com

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