Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Accent Forecasts in the UK and Germany

Yesterday I watched the second episode of Stephen Fry's four-part documentary series Planet Word which dealt with Identity and also had a short tidbit about Linguistic Relativity featuring an interview with Lera Boroditsky (although I must say that as a native speaker of German I'm still quite puzzled that I apparently tend to associate feminine attributes with bridges because they have feminine gender in German ("Die Brücke" ), whereas Spanish speakers associate male attributes with bridges because they have male gender in Spanish (el puente).

I also liked Stephen Fry's "Accent Forecast" for the UK

However, I wonder whether he was inspired by this German sketch

Update: Two (again quite negative) reviews of this episode, one by linguist Pauline Foster and one by syntactican Manuela Rocchi can be found here and here