Date: Thu, 20 Nov 1997 08:47:48 CST
From: Ellen Johnson Ellen.Johnson[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]WKU.EDU
I want to return to something Jeutonne said a few days ago.
I object to the use of "vernacular" in the term, an objection that
I have had since the early 1980s.
Until we consistently use "vernacular" with other terms, such as
Southern dialect, Northern dialect, Yiddish English, Chicano
English, etc., we make, in my opinion, an unfortunate distinction for
African American English. Enough of this soap boax topic.
I am working on a paper on what sociolinguists mean by "vernacular"
and the value they attach to it. My hypothesis is that although we
often give a style-based definition of the term, we operationalize it
as a class-based construct. So I am asking, What does "vernacular"
mean to you?"
And while I'm at it, is everyone here comfortable with the claim that
the vernacular shows less internal variation than more formal/middle
ellen.johnson[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]wku.edu