The Lady Who Suddenly Changes Accent Owing To Medical Condition
Michelle Myers from Arizona shares her condition, in which she wakes up speaking in a foreign accent after sleeping due to severe headaches. She has never left America and yet she can speak in different accents ranging from Australian to Irish to British. Of these, the British accent has stayed with her for about 2 years now. While talking to KNXV, she said that she was diagnosed with Foreign Accent Syndrome (FAS) and while she is speaking, one person comes to her mind. Initially, people didn’t take her seriously. Now she has accepted it that it may be the case that she will speak in this accent forever. She mentioned that it is considered to be either physiological or psychological but she wants to be treated well if it is going to hurt her.
As per the studies by the Center for Communication Disorders, this type of disorder happens if the language center of the brain is damaged by severe brain strokes or injuries giving the result as a foreign accent added up with the native one. People who are affected with this can drop off letters or forget articles thereby sound foreign in accent. Some might put emphasis on some syllables or adapt rhythm.
This disorder was first registered in 1907 when a man from Paris after being suffered a stroke spoke in Alsatian accent by Pierre Marie. There are 60 such cases registered so far, spanning all over the world.
A significant case of FAS took place in World War II when a Norwegian woman was hit in the head and the injury changed her natural accent and made it sound foreign. She could not speak with rhythm and so the neurologist Monrad-Krohn thought her to be German. This was the consequence of the rule of Germany over Norway.