First in Future: NC State linguistics professor Walt Wolfram

Summary:  If you make judgements about someone based on what they are wearing or how their hair looks or how they talk, you have an excellent chance of being wrong. Do Southern accents work against us? What about the other dialects we speak? Do people judge us based on the words we use? The answer to all those questions, unfortunately, is yes. What can we do about that moving forward? We talked with NC State linguistics professor and world’s leading fan of North Carolina accents, Dr. Walt Wolfram, about how all of us can get beyond judging (and being judged) by how we speak.

This installment of First in Future is part of a special TV series produced in collaboration with UNC-TV, and is recorded in UNC-TV’s Studios. Taped segments will air on the North Carolina Channel. Visit for specific air dates.


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