Talking for Britain: a journey through the voices of a nation

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Penguin, 2006 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 349 pages
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Do you say gooseberries or goosegogs? Would you call someone hen, my luvver or me duck? Do you like to eat a cob, butty or just a plain sarnie? And do you know what a grockle is? Using material from the BBC's ground-breaking Voices survey, Talking for Britain explores regional English in the twenty-first century, painting a vivid portrait of the British people and uncovering fascinating facts about local language. We may think that English is becoming homogenized as words such as chav and knackered spread across the country, but there is still surprising regional variation. How, for example, would you describe someone who is a bit moody? In Barrow-in-Furness you might say that they are narky, while in the Midlands they're probably mardy. In Scotland they might be crabbit, but in Northern Ireland they could well be feeling distinctly thrawn. A fascinating and superbly browsable book, Talking for Britain proves that regional English is very much alive and well - and constantly changing.

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Contents

CORNWALL I
1
THE WEST OF ENGLAND
24
LONDON AND THE SOUTHEAST
49
Copyright

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About the author (2006)

Simon Elmes is Creative Director of BBC Radio's Documentaries Unit. He was executive Producer of the long-running Word of Mouth magazine (1992 - 2004). In 1996, it was awarded the Premio Ondas, a premier broadcasting award. Elmes also produced the award-winning Routes of English, a 26 part series on the history of the English language as well as four books to accompany the series.

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