Date: Wed, 24 Dec 1997 21:49:22 -0500
From: Alan Baragona baragonasa[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]VAX.VMI.EDU
Subject: Re: Season's Greetings
Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Joyous Kwanza. Are there dialectal
variations in these?
Apparently there is for Kwanza, anyway, though it may not be dialectal.
In Virginia, it's spelled Kwanzaa , and a recent newspaper article
actually pointed out that the Swahili word for "first" is "kwanza," but
that a final -a had been added to the festival's name. It didn't
explain who added the -a or why, and I note that the RHD (Unabridged)
spells it "Kwanza" in good Swahili. So is there regional variation in
the American spelling of this relatively new holiday or just general
inconsistency? And why the un-African -aa spelling in the first place?