The Midwestern accent is considered the “standard” in the American English accent. It is prized by TV anchors and radio personalities for its every-man’s appeal. While the dialect is considered standard it all depends on where you are and you will find a variety of different and very unique Midwestern Accents. And it may help you identify with Midwestern-based movies.
By: Katrina Widener
Influenced by Scandinavian and Canadian dialects, those folks have a very distinct way of communicating. Known for their elongated vowels, especially the “O” in “boat”and the “A” in “bag,” the Minnesota accent is one of the more common of the Midwest languages. Other common traits? Unique vocabulary such as “uff-da” and “hotdish.”
Unlike their southern brethren, this accent stems from the rare type of redneck found toward the North. You’ll find this language in cities with a population of 20,000 or so, full of brand new pickup trucks and, in the case of Iowa, tons of corn. They are the wannabe cowboys, seen in wranglers and cheap Kmart western shirts. Just follow the sound of the “Wayyal, I might as well worsh the winders before the barberque.”
This special type of Midwestern dreams of growing up on the south side of the Bronx, but is probably from a northern suburb of Chicago. Using words such as “yo” and “shizzle,” they are the epitome of the untrue stereotypes associated with real gangsters. You’ll be able to distinguish them with their cheap bling, baggy pants and high-tops.
You may have heard Missouri referred to as the dirty south. Well, you’ll be surprised to learn they’re actually from the good ol’ Midwest. Usually noted for having accents that are a mixture of a Southern accent and a Northern one, this unique way of talking actually originates from the days of the Civil War, when Missouri was a state split between the two sides of the US.
Although hipsters don’t have an accent, they definitely have their own language. Full of ironic cynicism, this breed of Midwesterners pride themselves on speaking as non-mainstream as possible. Littered with obscure words no one else has heard of, they talk like they do everything else – better than you.
One way to recognize someone hailing from the Windy City? They speak in tones as flat as possible. They are sure to emphasize every word differently – you’ll never catch them pronouncing cot, cat and caught the same. They mix and match their sounds to create an accent all their own. For example, going to see the Bears play would only be spoken “goyna see da Bearsss play” by those from Chi-town.
The Midwest is full of young entrepreneurs and businessmen and women. But did you know they have their own language? Full stock options and projected returns, they know what they’re doing and don’t care whether or not you can keep up. You won’t catch them committing a gaffe, and not only will they know what that means, but the proper way to pronounce it, too.
Photo: Speech Bubbles, By jordesign