Disparaged dialects have rules too

The most compelling reason, I think, that we shouldn’t make fun of dialects traditionally considered dumbed down versions of English is that they, too, are rule-governed, and we might make fun of them incorrectly. And that sort of defeats the purpose of mocking them.

This article talks about three specific examples from dialects that are often made fun of. One is the Appalachian a-prefixing (he was a-huntin’). Another is the Southern use of the word “liketa” (She liketa killed me!), which is similar to the word “almost.” And the last is the African American use of the stressed “bin” (she bin married), which has a different meaning and usage from “been,” with which it’s often confused.

dialect

A fun reminder to get off our linguistic high horse (something that I’m often guilty of).

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s