isoglosses for hw/w

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Tue Jan 29 15:29:36 UTC 2008

At 10:13 AM -0500 1/29/08, David Bowie wrote:
>From:    Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM>
>>If North Midland distinguishes between, e.g. "hem, ten" and "him,
>>tin," a distinction unknown in California, then U.S. West can't
>>possibly be what happened when North Midland expanded westward.
>Well, like i said--lies my lx professors told me.
>>BTW, has anyone besides me, who have a special reason for doing so,
>>noticed how Southern (I use the term in its loosest sense, being but
>>feebly learned in dialectology; once the technical terms move much
>>beyond "isogloss," I need a cab in order to catch up) the speech of
>>the farming areas of California sounds? I've felt a draft in towns as
>>large as Fresno and even though that was the first place that I ever
>>was in in which public signage, e.g. in the Greyhound station, was in
>>Spanish as well as in English.
>I don't have it here, but doesn't the ANAE data show an island of fairly
>strongly "Southern" features clustered in and around Bakersfield,
>California? I know I've heard (from linguists and non-linguists) who've
>noticed the "Southern"-ness of the are that this might be a result of
>the massive Okie migration to the area during the Dust Bowl, but i have
>no idea if that's a reasonable explanation.
Just a WAG, but isn't there oil country around Bakersfield too, with
all that that implies (southern speech, country and western music and
bars, etc.)?  Was there a migration of oil field roughnecks distinct
from the earlier Steinbeck-era migration of dust bowl farmers?


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