Date: Sun, 13 Mar 1994 14:43:08 -0600 From: mftcf[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]UXA.ECN.BGU.EDU Subject: Re: Actors & Accent I think there is certaily an "ear dialect" that appears in films and may have its origins in live stage performances or in fiction and other textual sources. I can't prove it yet. Has anyone noticed that some African American authors use eye-dialect and other distancing features wen depicting black characters? See Richard Wright in "Almos' a Man." Here *damn* is spelled "dam'". I think Langston Hughes does it sometimes. Question: in *The Color Purple,* Alice Walker's narrator, Cielie, uses "us" in subject position. It is no accident or unconscious thing, for antother character tries to get Celie to change to "we." It bothers me, probably because I have never encountered it except in "Pogo Possum," but I don't trust my instincts much wen it comes to VBE or plantations southern or Gullah, having had very little contact with any of them and not being familiar with all the scholarship. Have any of you who are speakers or students of VBE or similar southern lects ever seen or heard an actual attestation of nominal "us"? I f you have, are the only exampes you know from Gullah speakers (or Carribean creoles), or is it more widespread? In the U.S.? Second question, to people with same expertise: if you have seen the film by the same title, what is your reaction to the varieties of English produced in that film?