African Accents: A Workbook For Actors by Beth McguireAfrican Accents: A Workbook For Actors by Beth Mcguire

African Accents: A Workbook For Actors

byBeth McguireEditorBeth Mcguire

Paperback | November 23, 2015

Pricing and Purchase Info


Earn 259 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store


Ships within 1-2 weeks

Ships free on orders over $25

Not available in stores


This is a comprehensive workbook for actors, covering the key characteristics and profiles of a wide range of African accents of English. Its unique approach not only addresses the methods and processes by which to go about learning an accent, but also looks in detail at each example. This lets the reader plot their own route through the learning process and tailor not only their working methods but also their own personal idiolect.

Full breakdowns of each accent cover:

  • anintroductiongiving a brief history of the accent, its ethnic background, and its language of origin
  • preparatorywarm-upexercises specific to each accent
  • a directory ofresearch materialsincluding documentaries, plays, films and online resources
  • keycharacteristicssuch as melody, stress, pace and pitch
  • descriptions ofphysical articulationin the tongue, lips, jaw, palate and pharynx
  • practice sentences,phoneme tablesandworksheetsfor solo study.

African Accentsis accompanied by a website at with an extensive online database of audio samples for each accent. The bookand audio resources guide actors to develop their own authentic accents, rather than simply to mimic native speakers. This process allows the actor to personalize an accent, and to integrate it into the creation of character rather than toplaythe accent on top of character.

Beth McGuireis a professional dialect and vocal coach for theatre and film. She is Director of Speech and Dialects at Yale School of Drama.
Title:African Accents: A Workbook For ActorsFormat:PaperbackDimensions:388 pages, 8.9 × 6 × 1 inPublished:November 23, 2015Publisher:Taylor and FrancisLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0415705924

ISBN - 13:9780415705929


Table of Contents

1. How to Use the Workbook and Reference Materials  2. Uganda ' (Luganda)  3. Kenya ' (Dholuo)  4. Zimbabwe ' (Shona)  5. South Africa ' (Zulu)  6. South Africa ' (Afrikaans)  7. Rwanda ' (Kinyarwanda)  8. DR Congo ' (Lingala)  9. Senegal ' (Wolof)  10. Nigeria ' (Igbo)  11. Ghana ' (Akan: Twi & Fante)  12. Liberia  Glossary  Citations

Editorial Reviews

"Beth¿s book is an essential tool for approaching African accents. Her comprehensive research and integrated physical approach help to demystify the complexities of different ethnic and national sounds, and allow the actor to bring a level of specificity to characters that is seldom heard. This book is a first of its kind, and I¿m proud to have worked with the woman behind it." - Lupita Nyong¿o, Academy Award Winner