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ERIC Number: ED051353
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1970
Pages: 125
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Dictionary of Afro-American Slang.
Major, Clarence
The speech habits of the most oppressed --and the largest-- segment of the black population in the United States did not spring solely from an inability to handle acceptable forms of spoken English, nor mainly from the limitations caused by the particular stock of words known to the speaker. Black slang stems from a somewhat disseminated rejection of the life-styles, social patterns, and thinking in general of the Euro-American sensibility. The rejection is necessarily diffused because it is impossible for any combination of ethnic groups to endure the kind of close sociocultural contact--despite the well-known inequity--endured by black and white in North America without showing the effects of the usual exchange and conflict. American slang in general is largely black American slang in origin. This is a book of the words and phrases used by black people irrespective of their origin, however. This so-called private vocabulary of black people serves the users as a powerful medium of self-defense against a world demanding participation while at the same time laying a boobytrap-network of rejection and exploitation. It is a language unconsciously designed to pave a way toward positive self-images. Afro-American slang is created out of the will to survive on black terms. (Author/JM)
New World Paperbacks, International Publishers Co., Inc., 381 Park Avenue South, New York, N.Y. 10016 ($1.95)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: N/A
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A