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The Birmingham accent is beautiful?!

The Birmingham accent is beautiful?!

Researchers – naturally from Birmingham – have apparently concluded that foreign people find the Birmingham accent “”lilting and melodious”. While I would hate to infer that the researchers from Birmingham University are biased, they are quite simply, wrong.

I detest the Birmingham accent. Can’t stand it. Maybe it’s from 10 years of having Brummie tourists come up to me reeling from hours of cider/beer abuse and asking for a fried rice or whatever. Maybe it’s the mono-tonality of it. Maybe it’s the way that to me, the accent just sounds stupid and dumb in the same way that a long slow drawl of an Alabama accent does – if Einstein had been born in Birmingham, he’d have stayed a patents clerk.

But these are nothing but highly irrational personal prejudicies. No better than someone saying they wouldn’t date a white/black/Chinese person.

With all those caveats though, I still can’t stand the Birmingham accent. Sends shivers up my spine. And not the good kind either.


  • I'm willing to be a few quid that it's the Black Country accent which is the subject of the study – yer actual Brummies don't have much of an accent at all!

  • Do you know, I've been waiting for this for days! And at last, an opportunity thanks to Brum Uni! Glad you've got it off your chest, however. You should feel better for it!

  • Well, if you're studying, say, ocean currents, it would make sense to go to a university near the sea. If you're studying attitudes towards the Brummie accent, it would make sense to go to a university . . . can you see where I'm going with this?

  • True – but how many people go to University specifically to study the Birmingham/Black Country accent ?!

  • Conrad Turner

    I believe that this research was conducted as part of a PhD thesis, not a degree course, and Birmingham is the only logical place to conduct research into the indigenous accent.

    Re: "Maybe it's the mono-tonality of it." You're exposing your ignorance here: no accent, dialect or language is intoned on a monotone. Brummie, in fact has a more extensive range of rising tones than most other British English accents too.

    Re: "Maybe it's the way they just sound stupid and dumb." Ditto. It's only because of the social connotations which this accent has that leads you to believe that it is inferior and that those who speak it are unintelligent. If you take those social connotations away, which I believe this study did, then people do not react in the same way as those who are aware of negative media stereotypes, poor public image of the city of Birmingham, etc.

    Re: "Einstein had been born in Birmingham, he'd have remained a patents clerk." Now you're talking sense, and this proves that accent prejudice is a very serious matter indeed. I applaud this study for bringing such an important matter to the attention of the general public.

  • keeley

    fook off ya bastat i luve the brummies

  • Georgia Harris

    I am originally from Birmingham and despite living in the countryside, have still retained much of my accent. Maybe you would like to come and listen to me speak sometime?!
    I have a feeling that, like with most people, you have confused the birmingham accent with the black country accent. Im not saying that the black country accent is horrible or anything, but it is often confused with the brummie accent and the differences are immense.
    You are entitled to your persoanl opinions, but there is no need to insult people on a personal level- e.g saying the birmingham accent implies you are stupid. Im not stupid, neither is my mother, father or sisters and i feel quite upset that just because i speak a certain way, i am put in the unintelligent catergory.
    Theres a chance taht someone from Birmingham is more intelligent then you. God forbid.

  • Steve

    Regardless of the Birmingham/Black Country debate; accent is in no way linked with intelligence – perhaps only in highlighting the lack of those so narrow minded to judge others by it – such as yourself.

    "They just sound stupid and dumb" – hardly the sign of a genius with your logical reasoning. I can tell you are as thick as shit without even hearing you speak.

  • Joanna Poulton

    I'm originally from Yorkshire but moved to the Midlands when I was seven years old. I distinctly remember visiting the local town (Walsall) for the first time, I turned to my mother and said ' don't let me talk like that mum'. For years in primary school we were led by example to say 'tuff' instead of 'tooth' and I would always refuse to conform. I personally have become used to the accent, it's even grown on me a little ( not like a nasty fungus either). I've still managed to retain a slight neutral yorkshire/brummie accent. Had I have stayed in Yorkshire I would probably agree with your slighty extreme views, but honestly some of the most intelligent people I have ever met have the most distinct Brummie accent. I suppose there are some advantages of sounding 'dumb' as Adrian Chiles ( a man who is not only charismatic but also very sucessful) says ; "If you speak with a Birmingham accent, people assume you're thick. But it means you only have to string two sentences together and ask one decent question and they think you're a genius."

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