Date: Fri, 10 Oct 1997 08:56:21 -0400
From: "David A. Johns" djohns[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]PEACHNET.CAMPUS.MCI.NET
Subject: Re: The Lords Prayer/Ebonics
At 08:02 AM 10/10/97 -0400, Al Futrell wrote:
I find this an odd statement coming from someone who studies
usage. Although there is no doubt that the fabricated Ebonics
Carol sent bears little resemblance to how an "Ebonics speaker"
the dialect, there also is little doubt that this language variety
regular misconstrued by non speakers. Seems that as language
this misappropriation of a dialect -- i.e., "incorrect" examples of
Ebonics flying around the net -- should be part of our knowledge
Let's distinguish here between honest misconceptions -- say, "Black
English replaces all forms of the verb _to be_ with invariant _be_"
-- and the deliberate, puerile misrepresentations exemplified by the
"Ebonic Lord's Prayer" and that web site.
The latter, as far as I can see, is simply the output of the "jive"
program, which has been around for at least ten years. It is no more
than a blind text replacement program. For instance, it replaces all
instances of "th" with "d", and all instances of "you" with "ya'"; as
a consequence, "youth" (in the _Electra_ file) becomes "ya'd".
Phrases like "What it is, Mama" seem to be thrown in at random.
Why such offensive silliness would require academic analysis is
totally beyond me.
Waycross, GA 31501