BBC Voices

Conversation in Beer about accent, dialect and attitudes to language.

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  • Is part of (Collection)

    BBC Voices Recordings

  • Recording locations

    Beer, Devon

  • Interviewees

    Aplin, Kim, 1965 Jan. 07- (speaker, male, fisherman), Aplin, Sylvia, 1940 May 15- (speaker, female, housewife), Clinch, Darren, 1965 Sept. 04- (speaker, male, hotelier), Clinch, Jennifer, 1941 May 13- (speaker, female, Mutter, Lorna, 1946 July 08- (speaker, female, cleaner), Newton, Cyril, 1986 Sept. 27- (speaker, male

  • Interviewers

    England, Kirk, 1973 July 31- (speaker, male)

  • Producers

    Radio Devon

  • Abstract

    [00:00:00] Speakers introduce themselves. Description of close-knit local community, its close link to the sea, how their families are closely connected. Mention five generations of her family were born in same street, anecdote about children taking off clothes when playing on beach. Stories about their family histories, mention long tradition of fishermen in her family. Description of Cyril and Kims jobs as fishermen, how they feel about carrying on family tradition, the future of this tradition.[00:10:40] Discussion about local language, explanation of words/phrases they use. Comment that fishermen speak broader than most local people, its a slower way of talking that reflects the slower pace of life which they love. Explanation of fishing words/phrases that have been passed down through generations of fishermen.[00:15:10] Mention phrases used to describe different types of weather including hot/to rain heavily, why weather is very important to them, how fishermen used to predict the weather before weather forecasts. Mention why Cyril and Lornas accents are different despite being siblings.[00:21:31] Discussion about attitudes towards their own/each others accents, reasons why their accents vary despite similar upbringing. Mention words used to mean baby. Comment that the accent changes as you move along the Devonshire coast, people in local area have their own way of talking, possible reasons for this. Mention words used by fishermen to secretly communicate locations to each other. Mention other peoples attitudes towards their accent, pride in their accent, future of local accent, how their children speak. Anecdote about young son saying Im going for a piss, learnt from fisherman grandfather. Comment that language is always going to change, people pick up different words from places they travel to.[00:30:39] Discussion of words used to describe EMOTIONS. Mention words used to mean insane. Use of thee for you. Comment that she never heard her parents swear when she was young.[00:37:32] Discussion of words used to mean left-handed/running water smaller than a river. Comment that local people are very tolerant of strangers coming to the village. Description of brook in centre of Beer, flooding that was caused by pigs trampling ground.[00:40:25] Discussion of words used to mean mother/father/female partner/to throw/drunk/toilet/word for something whose name youve forgotten. Mention meaningless phrase fishermen say out of frustration.[00:45:19] Description of features of local speech/accent, how fishing community and working beach strengthens identity of local speech. Difference in local male/female accent, difference in old/young peoples accent. Comment that local accent is music to her, it has a lilt to it. Discussion about attitudes towards their own/each others accents, how local accent has changed over time. Anecdote about playing on beach as a child, comment that young people dont want to work on the beach these days.

  • Description

    Recording made for BBC Voices project of a conversation guided by a BBC interviewer. The conversation follows a loose structure based on eliciting opinions about accents, dialects, the words we use and people's attitude to language. The six interviewees represent different generations of three families from a small fishing village in East Devon. The Aplins, Clinches and Newtons have been fishing in the tiny village of Beer for many generations.

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