I have a friend who went to college where he did for, really, one leading reason: the accent.
Sure, he found a nice campus at a respected university with a good reputation and a big price tag, but, ultimately, he sought colleges in and around Boston because he loved that accent.
Boston, most might say, is a culturally distinctive city of 650,000 in a region steeped in history, plagued by all the problems dense places face and respected for its future.
Boston and its portion of New England surely has a lot going for it — in Philadelphia, it’s the city we probably most often compare ourselves to in terms of college graduate retention and sustaining of life sciences business — but I argue one of the strongest, most meaningful reasons for its success that no one seems to talk about is, yes, those broad As of the Boston accent.
So I’m here to argue that one of the greatest ways to continue to bolster Philadelphia’s reputation is to expand its cultural exportation through movies, music and TV, highlighted by that accent that the rest of the country rarely can identify.