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Hautetalk: Can We Please Stop Attacking People For Their Accent?

January 12, 2023 | by Janvi Manchanda

January 11 was quite a happening day for India as RRR made history by bringing home a Gloden Globes for the Best Original Song for ‘Naatu Naatu’. And while the world was celebrating MM Keeravaani, SS Rajamouli, Jr NTR and Ram Charan’s success, back home trolls found another reason to mock the actors. During media interactions at the award function held at Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, both Ram Charan and Jr NTR spoke with an accent and that did not sit well with trolls. Ever since then, both actors are being trolled for their “fake” English accent.

Netizens took offence to the actors “faking” the accent and some even went as far as pointing out that when foreigners come to India, they don’t suddenly develop an accent so, why do Indians feel the need to use a fake accent to blend in? And while I completely understand what netizens are trying to get at but I do not completely agree with their comments.

In fact, soon after trolls hijacked Twitter to attack Ram Charan and Jr NTR for their “fake” accent, actor Gulshan Devaiah also took to the microblogging platform to take a stand against the unnecessary trolling and defend the actors.

Even Instagram’s favourite, Diet Sabya took a stand against the trolling by sharing some interesting DMs from users. But the best was DS ji’s reply to a troll who asked where the actors are getting their accents from!

Also Read: Priyanka Chopra Calls RRR’s Golden Globe “An Amazing Win” For Indian Cinema

To begin with, why are we looking for flaws and problems with the way Ram Charan and Jr NTR are talking instead of celebrating the win they got for our country? Having said that, allow me to point out that it’s human tendency to take on accents from those around us. For example, when we learn how to talk as kids, we take on our parent’s accents. Don’t we? I mean, have you ever met a kid who has a dialect different from their parents?

It’s also essential to note that none of us actually have original accents. A North Indian person will take on the North Indian accent while a South Indian will take on South India. Our accents develop as per the people we’re surrounded by and also by aspiration and that’s completely natural. We subconsciously take on aspirational accents be it American, British or French. We take them on because we see these places as first-world and aspire to be like the people from first-world countries.

Another factor to consider is that taking on a local accent is what makes communication smoother. For example, as a North Indian, when I go to Kochi, I take on a light Malayalam accent (I bet you even said Malayalam in a Malayalam accent) to make communication easier. But no one goes around attacking us for taking on a local accent to communicate better or call it “fake” but the second someone takes on a foreign accent, we’re all suddenly offended. Be it a celeb or someone around us, we all tend to look down upon anyone who adopts an accent but at the same time, we find it adorable when a foreigner tries to learn and adopt our Indian accent. Double standards much?

Also Read: From Dhoti Kurta To Saree, How Team ‘RRR’ Paid Homage To India At Golden Globes

I binge-watched 3 seasons of Emily In Paris last weekend and by the end of it, I managed to develop an accent which was a funny mix of American, French and British accents, thanks to all the characters! And when we ourselves cannot help it, how do we expect celebs who are not only surrounded by international celebs but are smack in the middle of Hollywood in Los Angeles to not develop an accent?

TBH, it’s very last season to give people crap about having an accent which is not their own. Especially when it comes to South Indian actors who are forced to feel conscious about their accents, thanks to all of us! Had Ram Charan and Jr NTR spoken in their original accents which had a hint of their own region in it, trolls would’ve used that to attack them. Guess, it’s time we just let people and their accents just be and mind our own businesses.

Ram Charan’s Wife Upasana Shares Glimpses Of Team RRR At Golden Globes. No FOMO!

Janvi Manchanda

Janvi uses her pen to smash the patriarchy. Geet one day and Wednesday Addams the next. Writing is the bane of her existence and the object of all her desires!

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