wilson.gray at RCN.COM
Thu Jan 6 20:52:29 UTC 2005
I missed it, dammit! But thanks for the heads-up. I'll watch for the
On Jan 6, 2005, at 3:16 PM, Educational CyberPlayGround wrote:
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> Sender: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster: Educational CyberPlayGround <admin at EDU-CYBERPG.COM>
> Subject: Re: geechee
> Hey Wilson & all,
> talkin about fascinating . . .
> did anybody watch the 3 hour TV document on PBS last night that
> focused on American English?
> PBS gives an English lesson
> By Robert Lloyd, Los Angeles Times | January 5, 2005
> In the linguistic travelogue ''Do You Speak American?" airing tonight
> at 8
> on WGBH (Channel 2), Robert MacNeil investigates the modern adventures
> our gloriously unruly tongue -- not merely what is said, but how it's
> both the words we use and the way we shape them.
> I thought it was a little long. . . and it did a pretty good job
> of explaining AAVE / regional dialect & Ebonics.
> I loved the effort made to explain once again what
> Labov, Baugh, Rickford and others are trying to teach the public
> and K12 educators which I totally agree with.
> I devote my area on linguistics toward that end!
> I also loved the way folklore - story tellers etc.
> were woven into the story - that was fantastic.
> FYI: see
> National Children's Folksong Repostiory
> but I was majorly bummed out by the
> complete and total omission of
> 1) American Indian languages which contributed
> to the first words used - how
> could they have done that!!??
> 2) Louisiana Creole and it's influence
> on everything
> 3) American Virgin Island Creole and
> it's existence as literature.
> Yes, the show was already 3 hours long . . .
> but they could have stolen minutes away
> from the hip hop, surfing dude, valley girl, snowboarding,
> roller blading and ya know like the rest of like the words,like,
> ya know, like, what i mean? like what about the netglishes,
> dude, ya know?
> spanglish, netglish,
> SABE - Standard American- British English
> OVE - Oral and Vernacular Englishes
> ICE - International Colloquial English
> which of course, must be invading everyone's language, like like like
> ya know dude? like i'm so sick of like . . .
>>> Sorry Wilson,
>>> Didn't mean to bum you out. This topic
>>> always brings up a lot of baggage.
>>> I run a mailing list called CreoleTalk
>>> for Linguists from all over the world
>>> interested in creole & dialect speakers.
>>> I used to live on St. Croix, USVI teaching
>>> elementary school. see:
>> Don't worry. All is forgiven.;-) I find the topic fascinating. In
>> years ago, a friend of mine went so far as to suggest that none other
>> than the late great Raven McDavid would be interested in the change in
>> meaning of "geechee" in the course of its travels from, presumably,
>> South Carolina to Texas. However, I never had the nerve to contact the
>> great man about something that strikes me as rather trivial. To me,
>> fact that the word survived transportation to Texas is more
>> than the change in meaning that it underwent there. A lot of black
>> Texan families, including the family of your humble correspondent,
>> their roots in South Carolina. Interestingly enough, "geechee" is a
>> common household term that I learned as a child, but I know "Gullah"
>> only as a literary term. FWIW, with reference to New Orleans and
>> locations in Louisiana, "creole" is pronounced as approximately
>> "kree-awl" in my native version of BE.
>> Justice Thomas is a whole 'nother story. But I'm more than willing to
>> let that sleeping dog lie.
>>>>> Some of the resources below may be of interest.
>>>>> Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas [is/was] a Gullah speaker.
>>>>> (12/14/00) issue of the New York Times in Thomas's own words
>>>>> "When I was 16, I was sitting as the only black kid in my class,
>>>>> grown up speaking a kind of a dialect. It's called Geechee.
>>>> it's too bad that you had to bring up the man once lampooned -
>>>> correctly, in my opinion - as "The yard-jockey of the Republican
>>>> right." It's spoiled my whole day.;-) What a bringdown! Starting
>>>> the age of *13*, I, too, "was sitting as the only black kid in my
>>>> class, and I had grown up speaking a kind of dialect."
>>>> Additionally, I
>>>> was also only one of seven blacks among 800 students. I'll stop
>>>> As the blues song puts it, "Don't start me to talkin', 'cause I'll
>>>> everything I know. I'll talk about [him] low-down an' dirty an'
>>>> word I say will be true."
>>>> -Wilson Gray
>>>>> "Gullah, a word derived perhaps from Angola, draws to some degree
>>>>> of West African languages like Ewe, Ibo and Yoruba."
>>>>> African Languages
>>>>> World Creoles
>>>>> American Virgin Islands Creole
>>>>> Karen Ellis
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