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March 2015, № 3 (178)

Kochetova M.G. FOREIGN ACCENT SYNDROME AS A FACTOR OF LANGUAGE VARIATIONThe article focuses on language variation. It may be due to several factors, among them — a foreign accent syndrome which gives rise to a systemic change in specific phonological segments of native speech. Foreign accent occurs subsequent to psychosis and/or lesions in the left hemisphere and its malfunction which may result from brain injury, multiple sclerosis, etc. The speech is strongly accented, which is detected by both: the speaker and the listener. The accent is postulated to be due to changes in accentuation of syllables, pauses and vocal stress. The article describes cases of native English-speaking Americans who took on British accent concurrent with their psychotic symptomatology. They had foreign accents during the times their psychotic symptoms were worse. Usually, the accent is one to which the speaker has never been exposed in the past. Its linguistic, paralinguistic and psychosocial components are still to be further investigated. As the only manifestation of the syndrome is language change, it may produce false impression of one's nationality, cultural background and education — everything that relates to language and is reflected in it. The accent may persist changing the language and thus having impact on one's self-identification, mental state and many spheres of one's life. Key words: accent, language, brain, foreign accent syndrome


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About this article


Year: 2015

Sergey Aleksandrovich

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