Date: Sat, 14 Jan 1995 13:07:18 -0800
From: Dan Alford dalford[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]S1.CSUHAYWARD.EDU
Subject: Re: Gullah Bible
Peter Patrick writes: "I get the
feeling that even though these folks are in some sense validating the
variety by publishing important stuff in it, they're still very
reluctant to see it as linguists do, and very prone to dress it up or
Anglicize/standardize it-- while celebrating its "difference"!
This ambivalence is a very familiar, and very understandable,
attitude in a post-colonial society, but it also reveals the very
same confusion of social values with linguistic structure..."
I totally agree. Coming myself from hillbillies from Arkansas that moved to
LA during the Dustbowl years, growing up in my early years in a church full
of Arkies and Okies, going thru sixth grade in a private Christian school
filled with the children of those church people -- I want to tell you, it was
a real shock in those early TV days to go to junior high and find out that
my way of speaking was not acceptable (especially when I wrote it!), and that
there was a Standard English that I wasn't really familiar with. Was I
embarrased? Yes. Was I ashamed of my parents and all those church people
for the way they talked? You bet -- because that was all about a way I had
to train OUT OF in order to feel accepted. And since linguistics is
essentially an upper-division and graduate enterprise, it seems it's with
good reason lots of people haven't 'gotten the message' of linguistics yet,
and still confuse social values with linguistic structure. Lots of people
just never really understand that 'standard' doesn't mean 'mandatory.'
-- Moonhawk (%- )
"The fool on the hill sees the sun going down and
the eyes in his head see the world spinning round"