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Received Pronunciation. Classifications of main types.




The abbreviation RP ( Received Pronunciation) denotes the accent of educated people living in London and the southeast of England and of other people elsewhere who speak in this way. Because of its association with education rather than region, it is the only British accent that has no specific geographical correlate: it is not possible, on hearing someone speak RP, to know which part of the. Faced with the difficulty of defining RP, many writers have tried to distinguish between different sub-varieties. Gimson (1980) proposed Conservative, General, and Advanced; Conservative RP refers to a traditional accent associated with older speakers with certain social backgrounds; General RP is often considered neutral regarding age, occupation or lifestyle of the speaker; and Advanced RP refers to speech of a younger generation of speakers.[29] Later editions (e.g. Gimson 2008) use General, Refined and Regional. Wells (1982) refers to "mainstream RP" and "U-RP"; he suggests that Gimson's categories of Conservative and Advanced RP referred to the U-RP of the old and young respectively. However, Wells stated, "It is difficult to separate stereotype from reality" with U-RP.[30] Writing on his blog in February 2013, Wells wrote, "the percentage speaking U-RP is vanishingly small" and "If I were redoing it today, I think I’d drop all mention of “U-RP”".

The modern style of RP is an accent often taught to non-native speakers learning British English.[32] Non-RP Britons abroad may modify their pronunciation to something closer to Received Pronunciation to be better understood by people unfamiliar with the diversity of British accents. They may also modify their vocabulary and grammar to be closer to those of Standard English for the same reason. RP is used as the standard for English in most books on general phonology and phonetics, and is represented in the pronunciation schemes of most dictionaries published in the United Kingdom.







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