[Ads-l] Droppng of _'s_ in writing

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Sun Sep 29 00:58:45 UTC 2019

Over the past dekkid, I've come across possibly tens of thousands of
instances of Possessive Singulars written as _[word]_ in environments
wherein you'd expect to see _[word]'s_. This loss of _'s_ is "standard" in
BE. But, I've seen so many written instances of it that I've begun to
wonder whether white writers might also, for unknown reasons, be dropping
_'s_. I haven't noticed any instances of the loss of _'s_ in spoken white
English, except in the case of the infamous borrowing from BE, _baby
daddy/baby mama_, instead of, e.g. _baby's dad/baby's mom_.
Anyway, not to belabor the point, I got an email on the local,
this-county-only network with the heading,
"Is this somebody lost cat?"
A quick check revealed the writer to be a white person from Swoyersville, a
neighboring town that's 99.22% white and 0.10 black.
So, at least one white person unlikely to have been influenced in any way
by black speech in his daily life drops _'s_ in his *writing*.
What up with that?


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.
-Mark Twain

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

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