English in England: Passage 6

by Lincoln Smith

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    00:00 Our next CARS passage is a linguistics passage.

    00:04 The title of this is English in England, At the root of linguistics is lingua or kind of the Latin root for tongue.

    00:15 So I want you to think of this in the terms of not just the meanings of words, that would be semantics, but also the sound that words make.

    00:25 If you're trying to do outside reading to improve on linguistics passages, you could focus on authors that themselves think about the sounds that words produce in their writing, or thinking poetry, Shakespeare certainly would be a good way to go.

    00:41 Also, keep in mind linguistics, while it might seem like it's more of a humanities feel, for the MCAT is a social sciences topic.

    00:49 So expect to see this topic discussed a little more objectively, maybe than we're used to seeing. Let's go ahead and jump in.

    00:59 We start with a discussion on how the English voice in England sounds.

    01:04 The English pitch is generally higher, the inflection is almost always more varied and then America.

    01:12 And as we come down to the second paragraph, we hit some more specifics.

    01:17 So we see that some individuals in England make this sound as if the speaker were attempting to combine speech with the deglutition of mashed potato.

    01:29 So this is the type of thing I would outline.

    01:31 If I were reading a CARS passage just because it stood out to me.

    01:34 It's really interesting and really illustrative of the point that the author's making.

    01:39 More so for me, than the actual literal words of what that point might be.

    01:45 We can define this a little bit further, in the next highlighted line.

    01:50 It manifests itself chiefly in the utterance of A, O, and U in combination with L and R, such as ale, pale, and royal.

    02:02 And we could pronounce these in this subset of speech as ayull, payull, and ryull.

    02:10 Do keep in mind that the author claims a little bit higher in this paragraph, that this type of speech is far from being universal.

    02:19 It is not high class.

    02:21 So we're getting into the differences of different Englishmen and how their speech might sound.

    02:27 Then, the author sharpens this idea by discussing the letter H.

    02:34 And then he quotes this English officer discussing pronunciation of the letter H in England, which concludes with the phrase, if he trips upon his h's, that settles the question.

    02:46 He's a chap, you'd better be shy of.

    02:48 If so it's this really kind of distinctive thing in the English here, how people pronounce their ages.

    02:56 Next, we kind of finish off the passage with habits of speech, when formed early in life, are the most ineradicable of all habits.

    03:05 Now, that really just was a very distinct thing to introduced into a linguistics passage.

    03:11 So, well, probably not the main idea of the passage, because it wasn't really argued a whole lot in that passage.

    03:19 I could see the showing up and a question, so I kind of took note.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture English in England: Passage 6 by Lincoln Smith is from the course CARS Passage Walkthroughs.

    Author of lecture English in England: Passage 6

     Lincoln Smith

    Lincoln Smith

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