Download PDF by William L. Leap: American Indian English

By William L. Leap

Examines the variety of English in American Indian speech groups.

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American Indian English by William L. Leap PDF

Examines the variety of English in American Indian speech groups.

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Urban areas are not usually thought of as environments that would support ancestral language retention, but ample efforts toward this end can be found in such domains. Navajo families living in Oakland and families from Laguna pueblo living in Los Angeles meet on a regular basis to discuss the news from home, evaluate actions taken by their tribal governments, and address concerns that they share as "nonresident" members of their tribes. Such meetings give fluent speakers a chance to demonstrate ancestral language skills and help younger people and others to strengthen their competencies in this area.

Similarly, the town of Ouray, in the southern end of the reservation, became the central area of settlement for the Uncompahgre, after they were moved to the reservation in 1881. Fort Duchesne and Myton were originally army posts for the federal soldiers who monitored interaction among Utes, other Indian tribes, and non-Indian settlers during the earliest years of the reservation. , Education, Health, Natural Resources) that carry out Business Committee directives, and other agencies and programs providing services to the tribe.

For most of the families I got to know, their desire to participate in the social, political, and religious activities in the White Eagle area made residence there much more worthwhile. Ponca people have been fluent speakers of English for several generations, and obligatory schooling, proximity to Ponca City, and other factors ensure that fluency in English is an important element in the socialization of all Ponca children. Howard (1965: 7) reports: "As a result of their years in Oklahoma, [Southern Ponca] now speak English with a slight Southern accent, and this has affected their pronunciation of Degiha [the linguists' label for the Ponca ancestral language] as well.

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