audio and text newsletter

Steve K   Friday, October 01, 2004, 04:54 GMT
A fair sampling of English audio with text for you English learners.

This is Canadian English which I feel is the best and most neutral accent to learn. It works in every English speaking country. Enjoy.
Mxsmanic   Friday, October 01, 2004, 05:13 GMT
Canadian English = American English, for the most part
Steve K   Friday, October 01, 2004, 05:30 GMT
There is a difference. Some areas of the US sound almost Canadian, but mostly there is a difference. The US version is a little more nasal, a little lazier in pronunciation. But let's let others listen and be the judges.
Ate a "hamlet" for breakfast   Friday, October 01, 2004, 05:58 GMT
At our school in California, we have three Canadian teachers and watch educational films produced by TV Ontario. We hardly notice a difference in accent.
Ate a hamlet for breakfast   Friday, October 01, 2004, 06:01 GMT
If you go down to Texas or to New York or to Massachusetts...well then, their accents are very different from Canadian English. And if you go to Nova Scotia or Newfoundland, their accents are very different from General American. But a Californian accent and Gen Am are pretty much the same as an Ontario or BC accent.
Mi5 Mick   Friday, October 01, 2004, 12:59 GMT
North American English sounds unwieldy and ungraceful to me. Neutrality and aesthetics depend on perspective.
Steve K   Friday, October 01, 2004, 14:35 GMT
A majority of Americans live in areas (South, North East and parts of Midwest ) where the accent is very different from Canadian. The West Coast is the closest. I can always tell an American accent.

I think it is more difficult for the American to tell a Canadian accent because it fits in within the broad spectrum of what is acceptable in American English. There are many Canadian broadcasters and personalities on American TV and they are not noticed. For that reason Canadian English is a good standard form of the language to learn if you want a North American accent.
Mxsmanic   Friday, October 01, 2004, 17:51 GMT
If most people can't recognize a Canadian accent when they hear it, then there's no reason to specifically learn a Canadian accent. Anything more or less GAE will do.
Steve K   Friday, October 01, 2004, 18:02 GMT
The reason why people would choose a particular accent to imitate is first of all because they like it. So it is very much subjective. To me a Canadian accent is more appealing than an American accent, but of course others feel differently. In any case one does not learn an accent in order to be recognized, but, if anything, in order to be not recognized.

Since the term Canadian accent is quite specific in meaning, other than for people from Newfoundland, it is a good choice for a language learner. The term GAE is less much more subject to dispute since there is simply much greater regional variety in the US than in Canada.