AbstractsEducation Research & Administration

Use of Accents in Denise Mina's  Still Midnight

by Ida Regin

Institution: Karlstad University
Year: 2015
Keywords: Humanities; Languages and Literature; Specific Literatures; Humaniora; Språk och litteratur; Litteraturstudier; Lärarutbildning; Teacher education; English; Engelska
Record ID: 1333438
Full text PDF: http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-35329


The Scottish crime writer Denise Mina uses the setting of Glasgow in her crime fiction. Still Midnight (2009) is the first novel in her series about police officer Alex Morrow. This essay focuses on reported speech and comments concerning language, more specifically Glaswegian accents, in the novel. By accent is meant different urban speech varieties found within the city's dialects. I argue that accent is used as a multiple literary tool: accent is used for moving the plot forward; for expressing detailed characterisation and setting; for addressing the issues of social class and national identity in subtle ways; for taking a political stand and accent is also used for inserting streaks of metafictionality. All of this is mainly achieved by writing on accent and not in accent. The overall effect of accent as a literary tool is the effect of realism which means that Still Midnight is not only a story about a crime but also a story about a city and its people.