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The study investigated the evaluations received by individuals who speak English with a Spanish or Oriental accent. The judges in the study were 134 American college students (60 males, 74 females) who listened to one of six different audiotapes containing the speech sample of an individual (male or female) who spoke either unaccented English, Spanish -accented English, or Oriental-accented English. The speech samples were matched for degree of accent, intensity level, and speech rate. After listening to a tape, each judge was asked to rate the speaker using 16 personality scales. The results of a multivariate analysis of variance did not support the hypothesis that accented speakers are perceived as having less positive traits; however, significant main effects for gender of speaker and gender of judge, as well as a significant interaction between type of speech and gender of judge, were found.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: January 1, 1990

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