Memory F. Mitchell: Accent on joy

April 19, 2013 

Accent on joy

I was born in Raleigh (correctly pronounced Raw-leigh) in 1924, and the recent article and editorial about Southern accents call to mind two personal experiences.

When I was a student at Cornell University Law School, one professor called on me almost every day. I asked several fellow students why I was picked on, and the reply was, “Watch his expression. He likes to hear your Southern accent.”

Several years ago, my husband and I were visiting a friend in Scotland. She, her adult children and we were talking when we began hearing loud laughter from another room. When the noise increased in volume, Joyce went to investigate. Her grandchildren were trying to imitate my Southern accent, causing the hilarity.

Those experiences prove that a Southern accent can cause stress but can also bring laughter and joy.

Memory F. Mitchell

Raleigh

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