Afro-American Vernacular English vs Standart American

Topics: English language, American English, African American Vernacular English Pages: 45 (14706 words) Published: January 27, 2014

Contrastive Analysis of African American Vernacular English versus Standard American

Table of Contents:

INTRODUCTION……………………………………………………………..…4

CHAPTER ONE: General Information Concerning American English………….7

1.1 American English…………………………………………………………..…7 1.2 African American Vernacular English (AAVE) or Ebonics…………….…..10 1.2.1 The Origin of AAVE……………………………………………….12 1.3 African American Vernacular English Grammar……………………………15 1.3.1 Tense and Aspect System…………………………………………..15 1.3.2 Tense and Aspect in AAVE………………………………………...17 (a) Third Singular Present Tense Marker………………………….....18 (b) Auxiliary “don’t”………………………………………………....18 1.3.3 Past Tense………………………………...………………………...18 1.3.4 Stressed “been”………………………………………………….….19 1.3.5 A Note about “done”………………..……………………………...21 1.3.6 Deletion of “have”……………………………………………….…21 1.3.7 Events in Progress………………………………………………….21 1.3.8 Future……………………………………………………………….22 (a) “Gonna”………………………………………………………….22 (b) “Will”…………………………………………………………….23 (c) Future Perfect “be done”………………………………………...23 (d) Immediate Future “finna”……………………………………….24 1.3.9 Other Markers of Tense and Aspect……..…………………………24 (a) Invariant “be”……………………………………………………24 (b) Modal Semi-auxiliary “come”…………………………………..25 1.3.10 Negation…………………………………………………………...25 (a) “Ain’t”…………………………………………………………...26 (b) Negative Inversion………………………………………………27

1.4 The Vocabulary of AAVE………………………………………………….27 (a) West African Form + West African Meaning………………………..30 (b) English Form + West African Meaning……………………………...30 (c) Loan Translations…………………………………………………….31

CHAPTER TWO: AAVE Grammatical Aspects in the Works of Ernest J. Gaines……………………………………………………………………………32 2.1 Tense and Aspect in AAVE………………………………………………..33 (a) Third Singular Present Tense Marker…………………………...……33 (b) Auxiliary “don’t”……………………………………………………..35 2.2 Past Tense………………………………………………………………...….36 2.3 A Note about “done”………………………………………………………...38 2.4 Deletion of “have”……………………………………………………….…..40 2.5 Events in Progress…………………………………………………………....41 2.6 Other Markers of Tense and Aspect……………………………………….....43 (a) The Omission of “be”………………………………………………….43 (b) Modal Semi-auxiliary “come”…………………………………………45 2.7 Double Negation……………………………………………………………...45 (a)“Ain’t”……………………………………………………………….....47 (b) Negative Inversion………………………………………………….…50

CONCLUSION………………………………………………………………….51 NOTES…………………………………………………………………………..54 BIBLIOGRAPHY……………………………………………………………….56

INTRODUCTION

This diploma thesis is devoted to the social variety of American English used by and among African Americans in the United States called African American Vernacular English (AAVE) or Ebonics. Thus the object of study of the present work is contrastive analysis of African-American Vernacular English and Standard English1 based on the differences in grammar and vocabulary. Language is a social tool or a social organism. As such it is the product of the society which employs it, and as it is employed it is engaged in a continual process of recreation. We may reasonably expect a language reflect the culture, the folkways, the characteristic psychology of the people who use it. However, language has long been used as a tool for categorizing, degrading, and oppressing groups of people. The actuality of the given work is that the situation in the United States today is no different. Notions of “proper American English” are routinely used to identify the “bad” speakers, attaching to these speakers unfounded negative traits and stereotypes. Language is also routinely used to relegate certain ethnic minority groups to the lower social statuses. Speaking a non-standard dialect is a convenient criterion with which the governing majority keeps minorities out of positions of influence. This research paper consists of an introduction, two chapters, notes, a conclusion and a bibliography. Each chapter has its own subdivision into points and subparagraphs. Chapter one...

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