A passionate story of English pronunciation

It's not what you say, it's the way that you say it...

There have long been debates about 'correct' pronunciation in the English language and linguistic expert David Crystal is here to set the record straight.

Pronunciation is integral to communication and is tailored to meet the demands of the two main forces behind language: intelligibility and identity. Using his knowledge of phonetics, linguistics and physiology - as well as examples ranging from Eliza Doolittle to Winston Churchill - David Crystal explores the origins of national and international accents, how they are influenced by class and education and how their peculiarities have changed over time.

David Crystal is Honorary Professor of Linguistics at the University of Bangor. His many books range from clinical linguistics to the liturgy and Shakespeare. He is the author of The Story of English in 100 Words, Spell It Out: The Singular Story of English Spelling, and Making Sense: the Glamorous Story of English Grammar, all published by Profile Books. His Stories of English is a Penguin Classic.

Part of a Season of Sound, celebrating the Library's sound archive. Audio installation supplied by Bowers & Wilkins.