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Do Americans All Really Speak the Same Language?

I was raised by two schoolteachers which meant our family of four all had summer vacations together.

My parents were determined to make the most of that time and so every summer we went on extended road trips to nearly every corner of the country.  As a result, I had been in 43 states by the time I was a teenager.

A few things I picked up on nearly right away on our travels were the distinct regional accents and how certain parts of the country used different words or different pronunciations for various things, all while speaking the same language.

Some that standout were flapjack instead of pancake, pocketbook instead of purse, icebox instead of refrigerator, and how the names Don and Dawn (which I pronounced exactly the same) were pronounced Don and ‘Daughwn’ on the east coast.

Now, a Ph. D student at North Carolina State, Joshua Katz, has published a group of awesome visualizations of how Americans pronounce words like:

Caramel

Been

Crayon

Lawyer

Coleslaw

Mayonnaise

Pajamas

Pecan

Syrup

The article also tackles the different words and phrases regions use to describe:

Crawfish

Groups of people

Carbonated beverages

Sandwiches

It’s a very interesting read.

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