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ERIC Number: ED162527
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Aug
Pages: 8
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Some Assumptions about "Village English" in Alaska.
Tabbert, Russell
The term "village English" has been used by a number of people to label the English used by Alaskan natives. The term appears in discussions of educational problems and often the phenomenon is cited as a significant reason for the lower than expected achievement of Alaskan school children. It is suggested that statements about "village English" are based on the unproven claims that "village English" exists, that it hinders learning in the schools, and that it originates through native language interference during the process of acquiring English. It is hypothesized that many "village Englishes" exist because of the many village dialects. The need for studying the language interference on schoolroom learning is emphasized because, it is suggested, language differences often bear too much of the burden of educational failures. In discussing the third claim of native language interference during English acquisition, it is suggested that Alaskans learn a more or less independent system of English through normal processes of language acquisition. When patterns differ from those of standard English, it should not be assumed that they result only from linguistic interference in learning English. The patterns may well be part of that village's dialect of English, which differs systematically from other dialects. The following set of assumptions are offered as alternatives to the common ones: (1) "village English" is actually "Englishes," (2) these varieties differ superficially, rather than significantly, from other dialects of English, and (3) the features of the English used by village children are acquired as a result of learning an established dialect rather than created as a result of native language interference. (Author/NCR)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Alaska; Village English