Linguistic Field Trip In Robeson Thesis

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Linguistic Field Trip

In Robeson County, North Carolina, a situation that is of interest to many linguists exists. An ethnically diverse community made up of primarily African-Americans, Native Americans, and Anglo-Americans, the community has remained relatively segregated since its founding. Linguists are interested in this situation because it allows them to study how the English of a Native American community compared with the English of surroundings.

The dialect of Oracoke Island, North Carolina was shaped by those who migrated from different locations in England. According to the North Carolina Language and Life Project, most of those who settled in the South in the United States were actually from the South of England as well, although some from the East of England also settled in this area. Because the current dialect of the area is based on Middle English, it is true that these different varieties of Middle English influenced the development of the linguistic situation in the area. The Scots-Irish dialect greatly influenced the area, as many Scots-Irish helped found it. The area is of interest because it allows linguists to look into the variants of Middle English that influenced the current dialect.

3. The North Carolina Language and Life Project's study of Harkers Island, North Carolina is extraordinarily interesting, as it allows researchers to study a dialect that was formed independently of surrounding areas for nearly two centuries. Because the island was separated from the mainland until a bridge was built in 1941, the dialect spoken there is quite different to other areas, and actually has many features of an older English. By studying this dialect, researchers will be able to determine important conclusions regarding time and language development, as well as dialect. In Johnstown, Ohio, another project is peering closely at sociolinguistics, peering at the relationship between cliques and phonetics, as well as age and language sounds. The researchers aim to determine if differences exist by examining groups of children and adults.

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