Ep. 15: “Why do we make assumptions about individual’s race based on how they sound?”

“My teachers encouraged me to own my “blackness,” whatever that meant, and to own my “gayness,” whatever that meant…Feeling empowered to own all of those different aspects of myself gave me permission to sound however I wanted to sound.” – Brandon Piper

On this episode of Speaking Of… I’m joined by one of my oldest and dearest friends, Brandon Piper. In this episode, Brandon asked the question, “Why do we make assumptions about people’s race based on how they sound?” We talk about the technicalities of accent including the dialect, African American Vernacular of English, and what linguists have to say about his question, but we also talked about our personal experiences related to the biases and assumptions we experience in our own lives.



Interview Highlights:


  • What it means to "sound black” in America.

  • Information on the dialect, African American Vernacular of English or AAVE.

  • What a “General American” accent is.

  • The Four Pillars of Accents according to Knight-Thompson Speechwork.

  • What does it mean to appropriate an accent?

  • Why there’s no such thing as a “natural” accent.

  • What it means to be bi-dialectical and how that differs from code switching.


Featured on the Show: 



Resources:

  • YouTube
  • White Facebook Icon
  • White Instagram Icon

© 2019 by Ryan O'Shea