The secret of regional accents is to be discovered in the rooms of the Laboratoire Parole et Langage (LPL), in Aix-en-Provence. “Oh, he wants to ride us… He found the key to dreams… Stop acting like a monkey…” These few sentences are spoken in a device that looks like a curious inhaler with tips for the nostrils: “That’s to capture the air coming out of the nose. It can tell me if I’m nasalizing, that is to say if I’m doing nasal vowels in particular. We will be able to see the accent up close. C ‘that’s what is good “, explains researcher Médéric Gasquet-Cyrus to the magazine “8:30 p.m. on Saturday” (replay).
In this mixed research unit attached to CNRS and Aix-Marseille University, consonants and vowels are analyzed scientifically. So where do these accents come from, which are heard in the different French regions? “The accents are traces of languages that were spoken by people in the territory, specifies the linguist. Whether Breton, Alsatian, Corsican, Occitan, etc. And by speaking French, they brought with them their different colors, rhythms, vowels and consonants. “
“A phenomenon that is transmitted”
“Subsequently, it is a phenomenon that is transmitted, continues this lecturer at the department of language sciences at Aix-Marseille University, who runs the column ‘Dites-le en Marseille’, from Monday to Friday on France Bleu Provence… That is to say that a young boy from Marseille who speaks today with a Marseille, Provençal accent, has perhaps never heard the Provençal language. It does not matter, the lines are there. He will say the rose, the bread, degun… because that’s how we talk around him. “
The accents are also expressions specific to the four corners of France: “biloute”, in the North, to designate a little guy; “kenavo”, in Brittany, to say goodbye; “bouiner”, in Anjou, for tinkering or hacking; “chocolatine”, in the South-West, for pain au chocolat; “degun”, to say no one, on the shores of the Mediterranean … or “that ghet’s mol” to ask how things are going in Alsace. And the sexiest accent? According to some polls and other mysterious studies, it would be Gascon, followed by Provençal and Breton …
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