Sep. 14th, 2017

mtbc: maze L (green-white)
I am not at all good with accents: I cannot mimic any and I am bad at recognizing them. Indeed, if they are accents that I am used to hearing then I am even bad at recognizing if they are incongruous for where I am: for example in Dundee I can talk to Americans without realizing that they are not Scottish. I have noticed that I find many foreign accents attractive in women, I suspect because I am somewhat novelty-seeking and like the idea of learning of many new things through them. Still, I wonder if this perception of attractiveness is somewhat random and irrational, especially as I rather like some American accents from the South, not something I can easily explain.

Since returning to Britain one surprise for me has been Irish accents. I notice that some Irish women have an accent that is attractive to me and some do not. The surprise is that when I discover exactly where they are from, it is always that the attractive-sounding ones are from the Republic of Ireland and the remainder are from Northern Ireland. I appear to be able to tell from which side of the border women hail but only by how attracted I am by their voice as I cannot directly perceive the difference consciously.

I suppose that these observations come with obligatory caveats that I invite people to take as read. For instance, I do not suggest that there is any rational value judgement here; after all, the Republic of Ireland has no special place in my heart and I wish I could see more of those people from Northern Ireland whom I know best.

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Mark T. B. Carroll

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