I'm a younger speaker, I'm a younger speaker, Hurrah!However, a lot of younger BE speakers give the noun first stress, 'research, as it is in AE.
... but only (presumably) in the eyes of non-younger speakers. If all younger speakers say REsearch, then it'll be those of us who say reSEARCH who look non-credible to them.[...] the generational gaps in language pronunciation can have a surprising impact on the credibility of younger speakers [...]
I wonder if this is a case of confusing personal history with societal history, honestly. Both pronunciations are listed in American English dictionaries. The oldest print dictionary I have goes back only to 1970 (Webster's New Twentieth Century Dictionary, Unabridged), but both pronunciations are in it as well.This is an old thread. I'm wondering if most interest in the topic is long past.
However, I'll respond with an interesting story about the social content of pronunciation affects us professionally. Many years ago (about 30) I was at CalTech, as an undergraduate. I was hired by a very distinguished scientist to work in his lab during the summer. One of his first tasks was to sit me down and "correct my English." He said, "Now Robert, the correct pronunciation of "research" is... and he proceeded to pronounce it with emphasis on the second syllabel, coming out "riSEARCH" as opposed to "reeesearch." Being impressionable and diligent, it stuck in my head. I continue to pronounce the word in the BE manner, and incidentally note that the "reee-" part of the word getting longer every year. I hate to admit it, but I still wince when I hear the word pronounced in the "modern" fashion and can't help but give more credence to people who favor the BE tradition.
I point this out, only to suggest that the generational gaps in language pronunciation can have a surprising impact on the credibility of younger speakers; much as 20-somethings, now, often end a declarative sentence with an up-tick in the inflection of the verb to make it sound more like a question than a declaration.
This is the part I am disagreeing with. I don't think it's becoming anything. I think both pronunciations have been around for at least fity years, that there is a preference for one over the other in different English variants and that both are accepted.But, as already discussed "reSEARCH" is probably becoming an anachronistic form of pronunciation.