Perhaps I shouldn't be so obsessed with the accent ...

The reason why I got a tutor is that I wanted to pick up a British accent. My teacher from Oxford is kind of strict, expecting her students to speak “good English.”


In our sessions, I read books aloud in an attempt for her to correct my pronunciation and help me adopt the accent. However, “to my disappointment,” she always seems to be satisfied with my performance; each time after I am finished, her comment is the same: “That was well-read.” I seldom get corrections from her as I expect.


At first I was confused, but last night I started to wonder -- perhaps being a non-native English speaker, I am a bit too obsessed with the accent with which I speak. I will still make an effort to try speaking English as beautifully as possible, but my perspective has already changed in some way. If you have any opinions about the accent, welcome to share your thoughts. :)


Dec 7, 2015 4:53 AM
Comments · 106

Victoria, it's a pity that there are many things you haven't seen yet in your life.

December 7, 2015

Romen, she probably knows how to do a Chinese accent already!

December 7, 2015

I think the main issue is exactly as you've written: you're not getting the corrections you expected from your teacher. It might be worth asking her to be extra strict on you, as she might have been listening for understandable speech. If your teacher speaks the way you want to sound - I guess this is exactly why you've chosen to take lessons from her - then you shouldn't be shy about emulating her speech patterns.


I haven't heard your voice, so for all I know, you may be reading the texts quite well after all. :)


The advice you can get about acquiring a certain accent can be really hit-and-miss. Quite a few speakers say the accent shouldn't matter, and I think native speakers are tolerant to a fault in this regard.  For day-to-day use, I agree that the accent shouldn't matter as long as you're clear enough. However, the accent you want is your business, so if you want to sound a certain way, go for it. It's definitely possible.


If you're still doubtful about your accent, you could ask for a second opinion, ie. from someone who is capable of helping you.

December 7, 2015

@prettyautumn I'm just curious, why are you so focused on adopting exacly this accent? Why didn't you choose an accent from the most powerful country in the world? ;)

December 7, 2015

Hello @prettyautumn


As you're interested in British accents, I thought you might like to add an Englishwoman's voice to your collection.

This is me reading the first paragraph of The Heart is a Lonely Hunter:

December 9, 2015
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