Language Fun: Hugh Laurie, Ellen, and Slang

The title on this youtube video is misleading.  Hugh Laurie is often praised for his imitation of an American accent in the t.v. show House, but this clip doesn’t discuss that. (Remember, accent refers to the sounds patterns of a language.) Instead, Hugh and Ellen got toe-to-toe with slang from British and American English.  The subject matter might not be appropriate for young audiences, but it’s pretty entertaining for those who are old enough to handle content that’s a little more mature.

YouTube – Hugh Laurie: the British accent vs the American.

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About LingEducator

Dr. Jaclyn Ocumpaugh received a PhD for her dissertation on regional variation in the acoustics of Mexican American English (Michigan State University, East Lansing). Before that, she received an MA in English/Linguistics from North Carolina State University for her work on the acoustics of /r/--a sound which is highly variable in the English language. Her passion, however, has always been to understand the social implications of language variation. In addition to her work in acoustic sociophonetics, she has worked with rape trial analysis, developed cognitive methods for understanding discourse level variation between men and women, and created sophisticated tools for teaching future educators about the kinds of dialect variation they will find in the classroom. She has taught classes in English, Linguistics, and Education at Old Dominion University, William & Mary, the University of Mary Washington, and Virginia Wesleyan College. She is currently a Post Doctoral Fellow of Learning Sciences and Technologies at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, where she is helping to develop models of student engagement in the classroom. She also consults in the private sector.
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