I think Americans have this thing about British accents. For some reason they think British English sounds "proper." Maybe it is just how I was raised, but British English just sounds like English to me, just as American English sounds like "English" to me.
When people say that British English sounds proper, it makes me laugh because American English is just as proper as British English. What I am tying to say is that American English is the standard language for Americans, and therefore, it should be just as proper as British English is in Britain.
I think most Americans think there are two different kinds of "proper English," Standard American and Standard British. The American viewpoint is that because the UK and the US are two different countries, it is okay that there are two different Englishes. This is different than most other Commonwealth countries seem to feel, as they seem to look to British RP first as their standard.
Although Americans might say that British English is "more proper" English, I doubt you'll get too many Americans (unless they are from the South) to admit that there is anything wrong with their English. As I said in a prevous thread, most Southerners justify their accents based upon "pleasantness," not "correctness," considering Northern accents "not as nice" sounding.
To clarify this matter ......how would you define "proper"? If you mean that British RP is "proper" then let me tell you for sure.....if that is the case, then the majority of British people speak very improperly! Take that as a fact from this true Brit (Scottish variety) :-)
I think that most of us from Commonwealth countries (including the UK) are looking less and less to British RP as our standard.
southern accent isn't pleasant at all to me. sounds very uneducated
"Received Pronunciation"...listen to Queen Elizabeth speak.
Yeah!!...just listen to Queen Elizabeth speak and try not to adopt the same accent! The vast majority of British people don't talk like that. Her background is unique so naturally she speaks that way because of her class and position. Now things have changed in UK society which is much more egalitarian, thank God. Did you know that the Queen had tuition to modulate her ultra RP accent and sound more "down to earth"? She pronounces words like "off" more like the rest of us now, and not like "orf"! Instead listen to a guy like Prince William...he speaks "ordinary" style English with his own strictly NON PR accent which is great. He even lapses into a bit of Estuary now and again...tha's a bi' be'-er, yeah? A bit like Tony Blair when he wants to show he is one of the lads!
Isn't it great to live in a free speaking democracy? About 400 years ago I'd now be on my way to the Tower to become about 30cm shorter in height! Hee hee!
That's funny that you mention the Queen resisting "orf" (awf) as the pronunciation for "off". Many Australians pronounce it that way as a kind of slang way of speaking or those from regional areas. Similarly, "gone" is pronounced "gorn"! :)
New Yorkers pronounce off like "orf." Except it's really drawn out and funny sounding.
I don't think New Yorkers and Australians pronounce "orf" the same way, Ben. With New Yorkers the sound is way back in the mouth. It's fun to imitate.
Why is schedule pronounced "shedule," not "skedule"?
Some Americans then say that they went not to the same "shool" (school).
If I spoke not English, I wouldn't write in it.
No one says ''shool'' for ''school''. Everyone says ''skool''.
I know! I just made an emphasis on how British say schedule.
Include me in those people who don't say "shool" for "school". I do speak English. Interpret correctly what I mean.