Unlike Cosby, that believes that AAVE should cease to exist. Cosby prompts his audience to not accept the Vernacular that some black people speak because it will get them nowhere. Whiles, Smitherman defends that there is no intellectual deficiencies in the students that speak AAVE. Cosby says younger African Americans do not want to learn the Standard American English whereas Smitherman believes that they approach school enthusiastically and highly motivated to learn. It is not that they do not want to learn but instead because of the constant tearing down of their vernacular and being placed in Special Educational programs as a result extinguishes the desire of wanting to learn. Ultimately, I believe that African American Vernacular English speakers are capable of learning Standardized English in the right educational system. Staying away from degrading young African American Vernacular and instead focusing on teaching something new can be the best way of teaching. In this, Young people being able to switch between African American Vernacular English and the Standard American English at appropriate times creates confident that can only be
The article “From outside, in,” by Barbara Mellix reveals the difficulties among the black ethnicity to differentiate between two diverse but similar languages. One is “black English”, which is comfortable to her while speaking with her family and community and the other is “standard English”, generally used while talking in public with strangers and work.
In discussing Black English, John McWhorter talks about the theories of the origin of the language. McWhorter talks about how people have made claims that Black English is related and comes from African languages. He also tells how their research on this subject is unreliable and “sketchy.” These people making these claims are outside of linguistics, meaning they practice things such as education and speech pathology. People like Dr. Smith, a teacher at a medical college, suggested that Black English is a mixture of African languages with English, where these African languages have altered English into a new language. Though McWhorter disproves this theory by showing that these “African Englishes” are called creole languages and are spoken in different areas like West Africa and the Caribbean. African languages are also extremely different from English in every way, making it foreign to English,
Throughout chapter three of The Myth of the Negro Past, Melville Herkovits writes about the African culture back before slaves were brought to the Americas. He refutes many previously thought ideas that African Americans have no past or shared culture which the myth in the title of the book. In chapter three entitled, “The African Cultural Heritage,” Herskovits argued that African Americans descended from a people with a rich series of cultural traditions (Willaims 3).
In James Baldwin’s essay titled “If Black English Isn’t a Language, Then Tell Me What Is?” Baldwin highlights his major argument by capitalizing the words in the title so that it can stand out to the readers. His main idea is that all languages are equal, and there is an inequality in society where one is judged by the way they speak. Baldwin wanted the readers to understand that all languages do serve a purpose no matter how a person articulates it. Baldwin also wanted to convey that there is racism that is placed upon a black person just because of the way they speak. Baldwin stated that “Language is determined by the person that is speaking it.” The audience is anyone that doesn’t consider “Black English” a language, people that don’t use
10). In chapter six of The Skin That We Speak, Asa Hilliard explains why it is hard to separate the historically oppressed status of African American children and the educational assessments used to measure their language abilities. Hillard also explains how teaching and learning are a direct link between shared language between teacher and student and the environment they are in. Hilliard also acknowledges that “African American children are not achieving at optimal levels in the schools of the nation” (Delpit, L., & Dowdy, K., 2002, p.91). Hilliard suggests that “African American children need to learn languages and content other than that which they may have learned up until now” (Delpit, L., & Dowdy, K., 2002, p.91). This means that educators need to reevaluate teaching practice and the assessment process to fit the needs and promotes African American children’s culture experiences. Provide learning materials that compare their culture with other ethnicity and cultures. According to Darling (2010) “Both segregation of schools and inequality in funding has increased in many states over the past two decades, leaving a growing share of African-American and Hispanic students in highly segregated apartheid schools that lack qualified teachers;
African Americans face a struggle with racism which has been present in our country before the Civil War began in 1861. America still faces racism today however, around the 1920’s the daily life of an African American slowly began to improve. Thus, this time period was known by many, as the “Negro Fad” (O’Neill). The quality of life and freedom of African Americans that lived in the United States was constantly evolving and never completely considered ‘equal’. From being enslaved, to fighting for their freedom, African Americans were greatly changing the status quo and beginning to make their mark in the United States. They have endured severe oppression and racism for many years and suffered under Jim Crow Laws as well which were created specifically
World War II was one of the biggest wars the world has ever witnessed. If the US hadn’t stopped the Japanese and Germans our way of life could be completely different. The balance of the world could be shifted forever. Although many Americans give credit to the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki for ending the war other things or people contributed majorly to the ending of World War II. A code, still undeciphered to this day, should be given major credit for the US’ success during the war.
“English with an Accent” by Rosina Lippi-Green is an informational text that includes the chapter Language Subordination which focuses on different aspects of the languages we speak, and the many versions of those, on a cultural and geographic level. In this chapter Lippi-Green talks about things like language discrimination, location playing a part in the way we talk or the way we carry out conversations, and even communicative burdens.
Bambara’s short story is full of taboo language, indicative of the colloquial speech style she seeks to represent among Sylvia and her friends. Taboo words like “Shit”, “damn” and “ass” all make multiple appearances in the story. Although this sort of language is not limited to the characteristics of AAE, it situates the African American childhood in their socially disadvantaged environment, where the inhibition level of using taboo vocabulary is at a minimum and the language is, in fact, that which is considered inappropriate in other social
In the essay “If Black Isn’t a Language Then Tell Me What Is” (The New York Times, 1979) written by James Baldwin, the author asserts that the African American community has altered the English language into a new language during the last five centuries to accommodate the black experience in American history despite the white’s attempt to submerge it. To begin the essay he makes his argument clear by referencing the alterations the French made to their native language to describe how people will eventually “...evolve a language in order to describe and thus control their circumstances…”; furthermore he continues to analyze how the caucasian people of America have only accepted the black language when it came out of a white mouth; he ends the essay by reinforcing his position, elaborating on the racism black’s have faced when they were denied the right to an education unless it was for the white benefit. His liberal purpose is to bring light to the subtle racism that African Americans experience even after the Civil Rights movement and to acknowledge the cultural influence they have in America. His writing appears very personal and intimate like he’s voluntarily opening up to his audience by letting them know of his own struggles as an African American, targeting mostly minorities and people who feel oppressed by white America.
The oral tradition refers to stories, old sayings, songs, proverbs, and other cultural products that have not been written down or recorded. The forms of oral tradition cultures are kept alive by being passed on by word of mouth from one generation to the next. These diverse forms reveal the values and beliefs of African Americans, the things they hold to be true, and lessons about life and how to live it. In African American culture, the oral tradition has served as a fundamental vehicle for cultural expression and survival. This oral tradition also preserved the cultural heritage and reflected the collective spirit of the race. It has a powerful history, beginning with Africans' proslavery existence.
In David Troutt’s essay “Defining Who We Are in Society”, Troutt argues that language directly displays to others our level of intelligence, and that “as a culture, the greatest benefits go to those who write and speak in standard English, ways identified by most of us as “white,” specifically middle-class white” (Troutt 718). He argues that condemning the use of Ebonics by blacks opens up opportunities for discrimination and even racism. In specific contexts, people may talk however they please, but to discourage the mainstreaming of proper, Standard English for all Americans, regardless of race, puts groups such as the black community at a disadvantage from the start. Most colleges or well-paying jobs are not going to hire someone that does not speak what society has deemed professional Standard English. As tough as that is, it requires us as a whole to teach and educate at a higher level, and hold all students, no matter their color or creed, at the same
The word “wetback” has a long historical trace. It was originally used to refer to Mexicans who illegally entered the US by swimming across the Rio Grande, a river that flows from Colorado to the Gulf of Mexico. The definition evolved to encompass any immigrant who entered the United States illegally, whether that was by foot, cars, or any other method of transportation. In 1954, the term reappeared with the introduction of “Operation Wetback” by the US government. Although “Operation Wetback” was meant to fix the recent increase in people entering the country illegally by deporting anyone who looked like an “illegal alien,” Mexicans once again became the primary focus. The program executed its goal by partnering with the police, and had them
The people from Africa were generally part of early American history; however, Africans had experience slavery under better conditions compared to the conditions imposed by other civilized society. From the Egyptian Empire to the Empire of Songhai, slavery was practice for the betterment of their society, however, foreigners invaded these regions and took their slave, their ports and impose these people to a life of servitude in the Caribbean islands and in the English’s colonies. Furthermore, the African American slaves were an active agent of society in the earliest period of American history; they have brought new religious practices to their community; for instance, they constructed networks of communities; they had fought in war alongside