Dermot Murnaghan introduces the first in a series of six live investigations of dialect and the way we talk locally, from contemporary slang to centuries-old sayings.

Using the unique resources of the over 1000 people who've been interviewed over the past nine months by the BBC 'Voices' project, Dermot and his guests examine what's happening to our vernacular and what it tells us about Britain in 2005.

With resident dialect expert Dr Clive Upton.


EpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
Description
01New Kids On The Block?20050803They're trevs, neds, spides and scallies, pikeys, chavs, wannabes, townies.
In Wiltshire they come from Trowbridge and are called Trobos.
They have many names and many identities and are the subject of heated debate, both linguistic and social, in the chatrooms of the internet.
But are they anything new except what we call them? What do they have in common with the bright sparks, spivs and drones of the past?
02Contains Strong Language20050810The linguistic landscape of the UK contains areas where ancient dialects remain pure and intact.
In many others traditional regional speech has been eroded and standardised.
Speaking to Ulster Scots - who've retained their longstanding linguistic connection with the Scottish mainland - as well as the people of Dundee and Salford, the programme looks at the way young and old address dialect and asks what fosters it and what dilutes it?
03London And The World?20050817It was in 1984 that linguist David Rosewarne first coined the term 'Estuary English' to describe various London accents.
We look at how widespread the Estuarial phenomenon has become - using recordings from as far afield as Cornwall and Manchester, rural Lancashire, Cambridge and Newcastle.
04You Don't Want To Speak Like That!20050824He examines attitudes to 'correctness' in speech over the years.
The pressures on dialect/vernacular English from social improvement.
Do you know about the hated 'Welsh Not'?
05Under The Influence20050831The way we speak is conditioned by influences both recent and remote.
Who'd guess that how East Anglians choose to describe a stream is still affected by Viking raids of 1300 years ago? The joys of Scouse owe a huge debt to the arrival 150 years ago of Irish people fleeing the famine, and today's young people's vernacular right across the country is being shaped by the West Indian and Indian speech of their musicians of choice.
06 LASTFriends, Neighbours And Big Brothers20050907Dermot investigates the vexed question of how much influence mass media are having on local dialects.
Are television, radio and the internet leading to a new uniformity in speech patterns, or have the effects been overplayed? Is the success of TV shows like the Kumars, for instance, giving Asian vernacular a new currency? And what is the likely impact of global chatroom communication on the way we speak in 21st century Britain?
  20050119Have you ever profited from a 'five-finger discount' or do you take your 'tranklements' with you when you go to work? Do you wear 'daps', or sweat 'cobs' at the gym?
The words we choose to talk about our lives are a trail of evidence about where we come from, what we do and even who we like to spend time with.
Dermot Murnaghan forsakes the breakfast news agenda to dig down into dialect and connect with communities of speakers actoss the UK to find out just how local is local talk these days.

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