Heard on The Judges II

Dennis Preston preston at MSU.EDU
Mon Mar 24 22:10:21 UTC 2008

Since it appears to be the pronominal confession hour, I'll admit to
picking up a little "you guys" stuff during my time here in MI; I
hope my upcoming move to OK will warsh that crap out of me.


>---------------------- Information from the mail header
>Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>Poster:       "Bradley A. Esparza" <baesparza at GMAIL.COM>
>Subject:      Re: Heard on The Judges II
>I use 'you all' to distinguish in online forums, but strangely not 'y'all',
>whereas I use contractions quite freely. I do use 'all y'all' in speech, but
>not 'y'all' as much.
>On Mon, Mar 24, 2008 at 1:00 PM, Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:
>>  A mid-twenty-ish black woman, reads an excerpt from a letter written
>>  to her by a former friend. The friend, as quoted, twice uses "y'all."
>>  I find this surprising. I use "y'all" in speech all the time, when
>>  speaking to other black people, but I use it in writing only whin I be
>>  funnin' wit chawl. I don't use "y'all" even when writing to members of
>>  my family and I don't even feel comfortable using "you-all" in
>>  correspondence, except as a joke.
>>  I guess that young folk aren't as tense about sounding cullud as us
>>  older heads.
>>  -Wilson
>>  --
>>  All say, "How hard it is that we have to die"---a strange complaint to
>>  come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
>>  -----
>>  -Sam'l Clemens
>>  ------------------------------------------------------------
>>  The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>Bradley A. Esparza
>"You can lead a whore to culture, but you can't make her think." Dorothy
>Parker, when asked to use the word 'horticulture' in a sentence.
>The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

Dennis R. Preston
University Distinguished Professor
Department of English
Morrill Hall 15-C
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48864 USA

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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