About Michel Thomas Polish accent and about accent in general

by Tadeusz
(Perth, Australia)

I am a native Polish speaker living in English speaking country for 25 years and I think I know English well.

I just read Michel Thomas biography and was surprised to find that he is a Polish Jew who was born in Poland and lived there his child and youth years.

I can say that listening to his English I would never say that he has any Polish accent. To me his English sounds as a pure, well educated English, not any colloquialism, not an American English, not an English from upper classes in England.

Just pure, easy understood English, I would say, without any special accent.
Such being the case I would suspect that his accent is pure and good in any language he is teaching. Just think what an accent is. It is trying to speak with sounds and intonation exactly the same as speak the people in a specified area in a specific country. This is an utopia.

It does not make any sense to try to do that by a foreign. Firstly, because it is impossible unless you are born there, secondly, because there is multiple accents spoken in every country. For example, in Poland I am easily recognized that I was not born in Krakow or Katowice if I go there because I was born near Poznan.

I agree however, that using only Michel Thomas method I have difficulties to learn Spanish and not to memorizing things is more a marketing trick than reality. If one wants to learn anything he or she must make an effort to memorize it.


Ed - As a native English speaker I would say that Mr Thomas has a heavy foreign accent, and I would certainly not call it 'pure'. I guess it depends on what one defines as pure and educated.

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