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All the way back to the 1960s, linguists have used something known as the “matched-guise technique” to test listeners’ attitudes toward a given language, dialect, or accent by blindly rating them based on a certain set of criteria.For instance, because of the United States’ early history as a part of colonial Great Britain, many Americans still tend to associate British accents with prestige, or high social status.We are committed to maintaining standards, protecting users and giving those users assurance as outlined in Our Guiding Principles. A link to our customer service arrangements is provided here. Unfortunately for American men, this stereotype turns out to be true often enough. Mainstream magazines and websites are full of articles, geared toward American women, that detail the finer points of dating foreign men.In reality, though, the attractiveness of an accent probably has little to nothing to do with the way that it sounds, and everything to do with unexamined assumptions Americans often make.One of the earliest and most fundamental findings in the field of linguistics is that our perception of accents is much more deeply connected to the social and cultural trappings we associate with them than with their objective sonic qualities.
Social norms change from culture to culture, and a simple act of flirting in one country could be seen as offensive in another.As referenced in the piece above, one of the most common reasons you’ll hear for why foreign men are so attractive is that they’ve got those “hot” accents.That makes sense, in a way; would Hugh Grant have become Hugh Grant if he spoke like Anderson Cooper?Point being, it seems that both for American women and foreign men, attractiveness often has more to do with perceptions and preconceived notions than it does with objective reality.Put another way: Beauty is in the eye—or the ear, as the case may be—of the beholder.
While living abroad, she developed a unique perspective on the subject of foreign guys and American women.