The History Of Ebonics, Or American Black English

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Ebonics, or American Black English was regarded as a language in its own right rather than as a dialect of Standard English, or as some would call it, Black speech. “The term was created in 1973 by Robert Williams and a group of other black scholars who disliked the negative connotations of terms like ‘Nonstandard Negro English’ that had been coined in the 1960s when the first modern large-scale linguistic studies of African American speech-communities began.” Although it was created in 1973, the term did not become popular until 1996. Another way to describe Ebonics is AAVE or African American Vernacular English. It is the “variety formerly known as Black English Vernacular or Vernacular Black English among sociolinguists, and commonly called…show more content…
Before the school district declared this resolution, few people had heard of the term Ebonics. This ruling made it clear that sociolinguists failed in one of their primary objectives and that was to educate the public and to propagate the results of over twenty-five years of intense research. Although the Oakland School Board released this resolution, it received negative responses from a wide variety of black leaders such as the popular comedian Bill Cosby, well-known poet Maya Angelou, and Shelby…show more content…
Fifth graders do not speak Ebonics, they just simply have not learned how to speak proper English yet. So, when many African Americans hear other African Americans speaking Standard English, they start to make fun of them and say that they are “talking white” or “acting like a white person”. It might have less to do with his/her speaking and more to do with the setting that he/she is in. I believe that if a student is in school, or a professional setting, they should speak Standard English and leave the Ebonics or the vernacular English for places like home, or informal conversations with their friends. Although some people have the ability to code-switch, others do not. However, because they are not able to speak Standard English all the time, should they be made fun of or should they be called dumb? I think the answer is of course not. Nobel Prize winning journalist Toni Morrison made an incredible and deep remark in an interview in the New Republic on March 21, 1981. “There are certain things I cannot say without recourse to my AAVE (African American Vernacular English) language. It’s terrible to think that a child with five different languages comes to school to be faced with books that are less than his own

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