Okay I am writing this post because I have heard and I am tried of hearing comments on how my accent is not mallu or sometimes its mallu.
First thing we call ourselves malayalees and not mallu. We are the most tolerant people (in terms of religion, education, food, alcohol, powercuts, communists, rain, floods etc). And its takes guts to speak like this (from 00.20) (Sreemathi Teacher, Kerala’s Health Minister)
Coming back to the topic, once at a job interview I met another prospective candidate that the company called, while we were waiting, he started asking about my whereabouts and then he quickly passed this comment ‘Hey you DON’T have a Mallu accent’.
2 sec silence.
“Well” I said. “I am surprised!, my parents are from Kerala, I was born and brought up there, I am suppposed to have one. I mean I am not born to a family from the west anyway”
1500 sec of silence. And we parted ways.
Now lets be clear about the accent thing. If we are born here (any state I mean) and brought up here (again any state) and your mother tongue is not english, you are bound to have this mother-tongue influence (as called by the call center folks) for certain words (or for every thing you speak) in english. But then you can have a nuetral accent (as the call center folks call it) which is something that you speak and then others wont be able to figure out which accent it is.
If you speak to a French guy they would have a French accent in the english they speak. The Chinese have their version of english. So does Indians. Now in India we have all these different languages that everyone tend to have different accents.
Now if you are from the North or (any other state minus Kerala) and think that you don’t have an accent you are wrong ! You have one. And if you are not convinced then please record your conversations (casual ones or practised ones) and then play it back.
If you are still convinced that you have Jack Nicholson’s accent (for example) Listen to this scene from “Few good men” and then try recording your version. Please compare. If you are close, please send me a copy.
Now the question is does Malayalee’s have an accent?. Of course we do. So do you, folks.
Listen to this and please don’t end up giving lectures on “sheesh you shaeve ansh Mallu ashent.Are you from Keral ? Anyways I am going to De Market to buy Phish”
In short when you say that Malayalee’s (or others) have an accent you actually sound like this .