Oct 15, 2008

Professor Geoff Nunberg Discusses Political Candidates' Accents and Authenticity

From Fresh Air (National Public Radio)
October 15, 2008

Fresh Air Commentary: For Candidates, An Accent on Authenticity
by Geoff Nunberg

What do Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Sarah Palin, George W. Bush, and John Edwards have in common? They've all been criticized for the way they speak — charged with affecting or suppressing or exaggering an accent so voters will identify with them.

But do accents have anything to do with authenticity? Does a dropped 'g' or a Southern-fried phrasing offer any kind of window into character? Linguist Geoff Nunberg has some thoughts about candidates and regional cadence.

Listen to the audio...

Last updated:

October 4, 2016