Story: Speech and accent

Social class variation

Though New Zealand is often thought of as a classless society, class differences are clearly evident in speech. The pronunciation of this National Film Unit journalist, who employed the British Received Pronunciation expected of broadcasters at the time, sharply contrasts with the Nelson apple worker whom he interviewed in 1964.

Using this item

Archives New Zealand - Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga
Reference: These New Zealanders no. 5 Motueka. National Film Unit, 1964

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How to cite this page:

Elizabeth Gordon, 'Speech and accent - Variation within New Zealand English', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 8 December 2023)

Story by Elizabeth Gordon, published 5 Sep 2013