The Gullah/Geechee: People of the Sea Islands

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Varlese Hall-Grady
Dave Crane
HIS-221-01X
26 April 2012

The Gullah/Geechee: People of the Sea Islands
and coastal region of the southeastern United States
South Carolina, Georgia and Florida

Varlese Hall-Grady
Dave Crane
HIS-221-01X
26 April 2012
Gullah is the language of the African American inhabitants of coastal regions of southeastern United States. They descendants of Africans enslaved and brought to North America by way of the West Indies or directly from Africa, mainly from the West Coast of Africa. The peoples of the West Coast of Africa were known for the expertise in cultivating rice, and fishing. The slave traders went in search of these specific talents on the West Coast Africa extending from Senegal to Angola. The captive slaves were from the same region but, they spoke many different languages.

In the effort to communicate with one another; the languages would be blended or creolized. The vocabulary of Gullah contains words found in the following languages, all of which are spoken in the above-mentioned areas: Wolof, Malinke, Mandinka, Bambara, Fula, Mende, Vai, Twi, Fante, Ga, Ewe, Fon, Yoruba, Bini, Hausa, Ibo, Ibibio, Efik, Kongo, Umbundu, Kimbundu, and a few others (Dow-Turner, 2). Gullah had been believed to be pidgin or broken English; until Lorenzo Dow-Turner's extensive linguistic investigation into the origin of the Gullah language. For seven years, Dow studied and spoke the language of Gullah and interviewed the Gullah speaking people of the Sea Islands. Dow-Turner conducted similar interviews in Africa in order to compare the dialects.

Dialect -Linguistics. a variety of a language that is distinguished from other varieties of the same language by features of phonology, grammar[->0], and vocabulary[->1], and by its use by a group of speakers who are set[->2] off from others geographically or socially.

Language-a body of words and the systems for their use common to a...
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