BBC Voices

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

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  • Is part of (Collection)

    BBC Voices Recordings

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  • Interviewees

    Dickson, Alice, 1949 March 26- (speaker, female, catering assistant), McAvoy, Anna, 1947 Nov. 27- (speaker, female, office manager), Hoy, Patricia, 1954 March 10- (speaker, female)

  • Interviewers

    Garrett, Conor, 1972 May 08- (speaker, male)

  • Producers

    Radio Ulster

  • Abstract

    [00:00:00] Speakers introduce themselves. Description of festival about local culture they are organising, preparations for the festival. Discussion about Sandy Row area of Belfast where they all come from, how it has changed over time, how local industry has disappeared, what Sandy Row was like in the past. Mention products specific to Belfast that are sold in local bakery, influence of Ulster Scots on their speech. Discussion about what ‘local’ means to them, close-knit local community, social life and community activities in local area. [00:10:40] Discussion about local speech, whether Protestants in local area speak differently to Catholics, how they feel about Catholics living in Sandy Row, what influences their own speech, mention local words/phrases. Discussion about what outsiders think about Sandy Row, how it is portrayed in the media, how it is changing over time, facilities the local area lacks. [00:17:59] Discussion about how people speak in Sandy Row, what has influenced local speech. Mention sister who has lived in England for 30 years but regains her local accent after a few days in Sandy Row, how she changed her speech after moving to England. Discussion about their own speech, changing their speech in different situations/when talking to different people, speaking quickly. Mention words they overuse, use and meaning of various Belfast expressions. [00:25:16] Discussion of words used to describe PEOPLE AND THINGS. Description of her family. [00:29:15] Discussion of words used to describe WEATHER AND SURROUNDINGS. Descriptions of their houses in the past and now. [00:33:18] Discussion of words used to describe PERSONAL ATTRIBUTES. Mention being forced to write with her right hand at school despite using left hand for everything else, experiences of being left-handed. [00:39:10] Discussion of words used to describe ACTIONS. Anecdote about playing truant from school. Mention words/phrases used by young people locally, more local words including words for various baked goods. [00:46:03] Discussion of words used to describe EMOTIONS. [00:47:22] Discussion of words used to describe CLOTHING.

  • Description

    BBC warning: this interview contains language which some may find offensive. 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 three interviewees are all members of the Sandy Row Residents' Association in South Belfast.

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