Sonja L Lanehart Let The Copula Be Analysis

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“Let the Copula Be”

What is “good” English? What is ‘bad’ English? Do we all use “Bad English?” In the Essay “Let The Copula Be” by Sonja L Lanehart writes about the proper use in her opinion of “Good” English. Lanehart first believed that everyone speaks in-correctly. Growing up, Lanehart goes out of her way to correct people in there “Bad English”. Lanehart in her own words says “ I was a zealous crusader for “good” language.” Lanehart, S. L. "Let the Copula Be." American Speech, vol. 75 no. 4, 2000, pp. 355-356. Project MUSE, muse.jhu.edu/article/2777.) She eventually goes to University of Texas to become a speech pathologist. After taking a couple of English classes, specifically “History of the English Language” and “American English”, her views changed. Lanehart realizes taking these classes that “Bad English” is so much more than
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What she previously thought was “bad” English is merely a language variation, each variation with its own history and culture. Lanehart now believes these variations need to be celebrated and that they don't always need to be corrected. The more Lanehart learned, the more she believed that English can vary as long as we can all understand each other. Lanehart decides she doesn’t want to correct people anymore. However, she noticed people kept asking her for help. Lanehart then came to the realization they didn’t believe in themselves. Being corrected had caused them to doubt what they were trying say. . She said, “I embarked on a new journey to find and reclaim my homeland. I have gone from one end of the continuum to the other, and I know it has been a change for the better. My family still expects me to correct them. I struggle with that because they believe in me more than themselves.” Lanehart, S. L. "Let the Copula Be." American Speech, vol. 75 no. 4, 2000, pp. 355-356. Project MUSE,
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