Have you noticed that I put on my gold earrings to get into character? I feel very bourgeois today. The word “Bourgeois” does make me speak with the vocal fry: Bourgeois. Anyway, today we are going to talk about the word Bourgeois. We’re going to learn how to pronounce it and when to use it, and what it actually means.

According to dictionary.com: number one – a member of the middle class, and number two – a person whose political, economic, and social opinions are believed to be determined mainly by concern for property values and conventional respectability.

Now, the word Bourgeois is derived from French. This is why we have this weird spelling pattern with a lot of letters that we don’t pronounce, but what’s new, that’s English. To pronounce the word Bourgeois we start with a B sound, so make sure to close your lips – ‘b’. You don’t want it to sound like a V sound or anything like that – ‘b’.

And then it’s the ‘ur’ as in “poor”. So, it’s not an ‘oo’ sound, it’s not ‘boorgeois’. It’s not an ‘o’ sound, it’s not ‘bOrgeois’, it’s right there in the middle. Because why be specific if you can be vague? Make sure that the tongue doesn’t go up too quickly, and then it sounds something like ‘bur’, burgeois’. It’s not a huge mistake, and everyone will still understand you. So if this is the only way you can make it, by all means, do it. But if you want to be more accurate, try to pronounce this ‘ur’ as in poor. You hear transition here, and the tongue is not going up until the end of the vowel. ‘pur’, ‘bur’, ‘bur’.

Then, although it looks like you’re about to say ‘goiz’, or something like that, the S is not pronounced, and the G represents a ‘j’ sound as in “vision”. ‘bur-j’, and then W sound: ‘wa’, ‘jwa’. That’s the second syllable – ‘jwa’.

The last vowel is the ‘aa’ as in “father”, you see it’s the same sound. So you drop your jaw quite a lot, relax your lips, pull the tongue back: ‘bur-JWAA’. So, there is this motion here.

Now, since I’m feeling a little bourgeois today, I want to start a conversation by asking you what the word bourgeois means to you. What comes up when you think of this word? I’m really curious, and I’m sure it’s going to spark an interesting conversation because there are so many people from all around the world here, so let me know what you think.