Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

West Midlands English: Speech and Society “Tings a gwan”: Linguistic Superdiversity in Contemporary Minority Ethnic Artistic Performances Esther Asprey.

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "West Midlands English: Speech and Society “Tings a gwan”: Linguistic Superdiversity in Contemporary Minority Ethnic Artistic Performances Esther Asprey."— Presentation transcript:

1

2 West Midlands English: Speech and Society “Tings a gwan”: Linguistic Superdiversity in Contemporary Minority Ethnic Artistic Performances Esther Asprey Urszula Clark Brian Dakin Jon Herring Ajmal Hussain Anit Mahay Samia Yasmin

3 Birmingham Birmingham – UK’s Second City Characterised by its multiculture – patterns of difference/diversity, which lend themselves to particular impressions of minority ethnic ‘community’ and identity. Super diversity - diversification in terms of national, ethnic, religious and linguistic categories globalisation – flows of culture, capital, people changing communities, conditions and contexts of diversity New complexities of diversity – interplay of: origin, religion, regional and local identity, cultural values and practices

4 Spiral Performance [video clip]

5 Black popular culture/identity It ain’t where you’re from, it’s where you’re at… (Gilroy 1990) A recognition of limits to relationship with homelands (not going back, second/third generations) A working of identity in the current moment and space – relating to ‘blackness’ (history, representation) while living in the midst of global cultural flows (hip hop) – resulting in a distinct local shape of ‘black’ identity ‘race’/ethnicity do not determine performers’ style – they offer a strategic space from which to speak Intermezzo culture (Back 1995)

6 physical demarker of space on the edge of the Black Country region invitation to share in the imagined community it constructs through the use of variation by those driving past iconic representation of Black Country identity, accessible to anyone across the globe who has access to the internet subverts traditional, authoritative and powerful notions of ‘correctness’ surrounding use of spelling

7 Key terms: indexicality and enregisterment Indexicality Speakers generally unaware of variables which mark them as a member of a particular group Once identified they come to be correlated with a specific socio-demographic identity e.g. region or class, by cultural outsiders such as linguists First order indexicality: the frequency of regional variants correlate with being from a particular place, Black Country or Birmingham

8 Orders of Indexicality, continued Second order indexicality: frequency of particular regional variants correlated with being from Birmingham, Black Country, being working class etc. Socially non-mobile people in dense, multiplex social networks don’t notice these correlations, since ‘everyone speaks that way’ Specific feature becomes topic of overt social comment by outsiders. May become divorced from forms that are actually used, thus may eventually disappear Third order indexicality: people, including those from the ‘inside’ such as ‘Brummies” become conscious of features marked out as regional, and that places / varieties are essentially linked Regional forms then used to mark sense of place identity; are drawn from highly codified lists to perform local identity, often in comic, ironic or semi-serious ways orders of indexicality flexible / dynamic / do not presuppose stereotypes are stigmatized

9 Key terms: indexicality and enregisterment Enregisterment is thus a process ‘through which a linguistic repertoire becomes differentiable [and] … socially recognised’ (Agha 2003:231). Enregisterment describes the ways in which a set of linguistic features that were firstly, once not noticed at all, secondly came to be heard and used primarily as markers of socio-economic class and thirdly, more recently, have come to be linked to place and ‘enregistered’ as a specific variety, such as Pittsburghese, the Black Country, South African English, Indian English and so on.

10 Accommodation Theory Accommodation theory is the degree to which speakers adjust ways of interacting with one another; is based upon the twin concepts of convergence, divergence and maintenance; they do this by altering in some way linguistic features such as pronunciation, intonation, morphosyntax, register and so on, according to whom they are speaking; takes account of the fact that communication processes are complex, comprising of different components or features and the various relationships between them

11 Outline of “Black Brum” linguistic data and types of variation observed Data: Subset of the West Midlands Speech and Society data Collected ethnographically by Dakin, Asprey, Hussain, Mahay & Yasmin 5 hours 10mins of audio data, of 3 types: Individual or group performance2h 43m Interview(s) with performers1h 36m Interview(s) with audience0h 51m Descriptive levels: Phonologicaltranscribed and coded Grammatical“non-standard” items Lexical

12 Background Information on performers Deci4life (Auden Allen) 26 yrs old “British man of colour” Born in Solihull Parents born in Jamaica Andre ‘Soul’ Hesson 25 yrs old Youth Worker Born in Smethwick Parents born in Jamaica

13 Examples of BBE phonological features (in whole dataset) FeatureIndexesExample (TH-stopping)BBE/ JamC you know when you do karate you get like a white belt or a black belt like one of them things there (Deci4life, performance) (TH-fronting)WME/ EstuE everything I say I do… I’m the realist (Deci4life, performance) (rhoticity)JamCand he said how one girl was so trusting (Andre Soul, audience member) (STRUT vowel) WME EstuE no matter what colour you are (Andre Soul, interview) if I’m in London I might just drag my words a little bit (Deci4life, interview) (NG-fronting)allso you’re thinking I either don’t eat this…

14 Examples of BBE grammatical features (in whole dataset) FeatureDetailsExample (bare_verb) lack of –s verb agreement for 3sg pres he bring_ things as well to his performances (Andre Soul, audience member) (IMMA) future intentional Imma so I’m (gonn)a ask the audience (Andre Soul, performance) (was_weren’t) non-standard past form of BE we/you they was I/he/she/it weren’t it weren’t just me it was a few of us (Andre Soul, performance) imagine you was in the Matrix (Andre Soul, performance) (a_an) use of article a even when following noun begins with a vowel I’m a artist (Andre Soul, interview)

15 Examples of BBE lexis (in whole dataset) ItemMeaningNotes garmsclothes Clippings of lexical items are ubiquitous in BBE. Here we have an example of a back- clip of ‘garments’ rampto fight Typical of BBE vexedangry JamC term from Old English, widely used in BBE and wider youth vernacular you get me‘you understand?’ Very popular tag question in BBE (Deci4Life, audience member) wagwan ‘what’s going on’ or ‘what’s happening’ Popular JamC term, often used as greeting Now prevalent in BBE and wider vernacular homicidemurder This Americanism is used in place of the British usage enit?isn’t it? Birmingham pronunciation of the tag question (Deci4LIfe audience member)

16 Discourse Analysis extract 1 Andre Soul, Performance because the other part is some women can’t cook properly but then every man likes a good home meal from a woman so if you go to a girl’s house and you’re like babes I’ve cooked for you in your head I should have ordered Chinese you know I should have went KFC (laughter) but I’m just gonna chill and appreciate this meal and have you ever wanted to I know that certain people is in the room so I’m not gonna say sorry mum but have you ever wanted a girl so bad and she looks good but you go to the yard and you’re like rah (laughter) you’re like rah you get me and then as you cook it yeah you’re cutting into the meat because being at girl’s house you don’t just use your hands ’cause I’m a wild child mean I’m a part animal chicken gets (unintelligible) chick- (laughter) me and chicken have a communication where chicken could come on my plate and just say take me sacrifice like as if it’s religion but when you’re at a girl’s house you can’t eat like that cause then she starts to get ideas and then tings a gwan you get me (laughter) unless you’re you get me nah it’s true (unintelligible) and then you cut into it and you realise she ain’t cooked it properly so you’re thinking I either don’t eat this and offend her and don’t get no nookie (laughter) or eat this and clench my butt cheeks so my (unintelligible) go toilet (laughter) or I end up doing somethin’ halfway through and (laughter) I get kicked out of the room you get me like big tings can’t gwan (laughter)

17 Discourse Analysis extract 1 (phonology) Andre Soul, Performance because the other part is some women can’t cook properly but then every man likes a good home meal from a woman so if you go to a girl’s house and you’re like babes I’ve cooked for you in your head I should have ordered Chinese you know I should have went KFC (laughter) but I’m just gonna chill and appreciate this meal and have you ever wanted to I know that certain people is in the room so I’m not gonna say sorry mum but have you ever wanted a girl so bad and she looks good but you go to the yard and you’re like rah (laughter) you’re like rah you get me and then as you cook it yeah you’re cutting into the meat because being at girl’s house you don’t just use your hands ’cause I’m a wild child mean I’m a part animal chicken gets (unintelligible) chick- (laughter) me and chicken have a communication where chicken could come on my plate and just say take me sacrifice like as if it’s religion but when you’re at a girl’s house you can’t eat like that cause then she starts to get ideas and then tings a gwan you get me (laughter) unless you’re you get me nah it’s true (unintelligible) and then you cut into it and you realise she ain’t cooked it properly so you’re thinking I either don’t eat this and offend her and don’t get no nookie (laughter) or eat this and clench my butt cheeks so my (unintelligible) go toilet (laughter) or I end up doing somethin’ halfway through and (laughter) I get kicked out of the room you get me like big tings can’t gwan (laughter)

18 Discourse Analysis extract 2 Deci4Life, performance D:you know what you know what Eugina S:Eugima D:you’re ignorant you know S:what you chat about D:and arrogant S:and you a-drink out of the jug D:ignorant and arrogant and stuck in a time zone Rasta man S:what you chat about D:KST D:times are changing S:me never tell you something up to the time D:nah times are changing (laughter) D:changing is (rearranging) (--) you see me (.) I’m evolving evolution is the revolution (-) you’re part of the problem if you’re not part of the solution (1.4) you see people like you (-) S:yeah (.) D:people like you get left behind (--) S:(found with) backward you never heard that youth D:shut your mouth S:about shut up (man come up in ‘ere)

19 Discourse Analysis extract 2 (continued) D:I’m a new and improved model and you (.) you’re just out of date design let me give you some advice (--) you should resign don’t BITCH and whine because technology is improving and you ain’t up to the time S:what you chat about you hear me you know (-) and you know something youth I have a laptop D:you don’t know about Facebook though (--) (laughter) D:there’s unity in this new community (-) things ain’t what they used to be (-) it’s not that you’re blind (.) it’s just you don’t choose to see (---) take a look (-) read a few pages out my Facebook (--) before you make assumptions and judgements about my ways adjust your frequency to my way (.) take a step into My Space (.) stop Twittering and get your head up out the SoundCloud (--) yo the revolution will be televised (--) ‘cause we’ll record it on our phones and upload it to YouTube it’s major you’re miniscule (---) (laughter) D:you’re analogue I’m digital (.) adapt because if you can’t connect you’ll never reach a pinnacle (.) you’re cynical look man if you don’t like it (-) don’t fight it (-) because there’s nothin’ you can do (---) stay stuck in the past and nothing will ever be new to you (.) and you will watch life go past you like a (zulu) (--) yo you know what (1.6) you ain’t no different to me (---) you can’t challenge me (1.1) don’t take your issues out on me yo (--) don’t get mad at me (1.3) unity in this lifetime (-) it’s all a fallacy (---) and all that truth you stand for (1.6) it’s all a fantasy (1.2) theoretical doctrines ideologies it’s all a parody (--) (while) I’m stuck in this reality (---) and if I don’t survive (-) if I don’t stay alive (--) then I’ll be just another fuckin’ fatality (---) S:what did I tell you about your tongue

20 Discourse Analysis extract 3 Deci4life Interview D:I’ve got a strong Brummie accent yes but it’s also very erm inter-like-national it’s more of a national accent A:Yeah D:because like if I’m in the way I’ve designed my accent is if I’m in London I might just drag my words a little bit but it still will be very much from Brum A:Yeah yeah D:But the way that I say it like you know what I mean A:Exactly yeah yeah yeah D:I think that’s a Birmingham thing B:Yeah yeah D:Because I don’t really see when Londoners are in America or Jamaica they’re Londoners you get me A:Yeah they keep it yeah just straight in (other speakers) D:But with my friends especially if I’m in America my accent starts starts to go American A:Yeah D:Like it starts to happen they can tell you’re from England but it will influence wherever I am if I’m in Manchester it will influence it. I’ve been in America and a man walks to me like ‘what’s gwarning’ I’m like that means like ‘what’s up dog’ like like ‘what’s up man’ ‘what’s crackin blood’ ‘what’s poppin’. It’s still Brum but I’ve just dragged the words out just and he’s like ‘where you from? You from you from England?’ And I’m like ‘yeah yeah yeah I’m from England still’ like so depending on who I’m talking to I switch it.

21 Discourse Analysis extract 3 (phonology) Deci4life Interview D:I’ve got a strong Brummie accent yes but it’s also very erm inter-like-national it’s more of a national accent A:Yeah D:because like if I’m in the way I’ve designed my accent is if I’m in London I might just drag my words a little bit but it still will be very much from Brum A:Yeah yeah D:But the way that I say it like you know what I mean A:Exactly yeah yeah yeah D:I think that’s a Birmingham thing B:Yeah yeah D:Because I don’t really see when Londoners are in America or Jamaica they’re Londoners you get me A:Yeah they keep it yeah just straight in (other speakers) D:But with my friends especially if I’m in America my accent starts starts to go American A:Yeah D:Like it starts to happen they can tell you’re from England but it will influence wherever I am if I’m in Manchester it will influence it. I’ve been in America and a man walks to me like ‘what’s gwarning’ I’m like that means like ‘what’s up dog’ like like ‘what’s up man’ ‘what’s crackin’ blood’ ‘what’s poppin’. It’s still Brum but I’ve just dragged the words out just and he’s like ‘where you from? You from you from England?’ And I’m like ‘yeah yeah yeah I’m from England still’ like so depending on who I’m talking to I switch it.

22 Discourse Analysis extract 4 Andre Audience Interview (Maria Hesson, Andre Soul’s mother) M:he seems to change his accents every so often and he seems to sound like he's a a Yankee? like an American? and another time he sounds like a Londoner and then northern a northerner Aj:why's that? M:and then a Brummie! Aj:yeah yeah M:he's all over the place Aj:he's all over the place yeah yeah why do you think that is? M:well at one stage his upbringing was literally in sort of the Brummie the Black Country and Smethwick area and his nursing nursery was up that end and then over the years he actually um spent time in London and then he came back over and we took some time in Jamaica with him and then also then we was back here in England but when we came back to England we come more Edgbaston side and more to the um Birmingham Solihull side Aj:so you know when you were saying a bit about in the auditions when they say oh yes but and they give him all them reasons right has anyone ever said anything about his accent at all M:never Aj:no never M:never all they always emphasise to him is indicating that sometimes they find that because he’s like a slight lisp they could do with hoping that he could be a little bit more clearer in his definition of a certain word which he knows this and he’s doing his best (unintelligible) to sort of make the changes but habit of a lifetime what do you do you’re gonna need some serious elocution lessons (unintelligible) to get your tongue to you know unless you chop it off Aj:you don’t wanna

23 Discourse Analysis extract 4 (phonology) Andre Audience Interview (Maria Hesson, Andre Soul’s mother) M:he seems to change his accents every so often and he seems to sound like he's a a Yankee? like an American? and another time he sounds like a Londoner and then northern a northerner Aj:why's that? M:and then a Brummie! Aj:yeah yeah M:he's all over the place Aj:he's all over the place yeah yeah why do you think that is? M:well at one stage his upbringing was literally in sort of the Brummie the Black Country and Smethwick area and his nursing nursery was up that end and then over the years he actually um spent time in London and then he came back over and we took some time in Jamaica with him and then also then we was back here in England but when we came back to England we come more Edgbaston side and more to the um Birmingham Solihull side Aj:so you know when you were saying a bit about in the auditions when they say oh yes but and they give him all them reasons right has anyone ever said anything about his accent at all M:never Aj:no never M:never all they always emphasise to him is indicating that sometimes they find that because he’s like a slight lisp they could do with hoping that he could be a little bit more clearer in his definition of a certain word which he knows this and he’s doing his best (unintelligible) to sort of make the changes but habit of a lifetime what do you do you’re gonna need some serious elocution lessons (unintelligible) to get your tongue to you know unless you chop it off Aj:you don’t wanna

24 Discourse Analysis extract 5 Deci4life, Audience Interview obviously his character as a character uh is universal so he he could be played by any uh you'd think you could be anywhere in England 'cause there's you know there's youths like him or or youths like that character all over England in every other borough but there was particular things about his character that you could tell he was from Birmingham because of there was certain like slang that he would use certain body postures certain the thing the uh the certain uh the way that he would dress um his demeanour you know what I mean there's there's there's yeah there's certain characteristics about particularly about Birmingham youth that only Birmingham youth had that like you know like um I remember one time I went to Manchester yeah and someone said to me when it someone in Manchester said to me ‘you’re from Birmingham aren't you? I can tell by your character’ you know what I mean and it is true like you can tell the distinctive traits that Londoners uh Brummies or Manchesters or Liverpool whatever whatever borough you're from you pick up certain uh certain uh what's the word I'm looking for (click-shakes fingers) can't think of the word right now yeah the way they carry themselves their swagger yeah that’s what it is their swagger everyone has it you know even though you even though he was a universal character the swagger you could tell he was from Birmingham

25 Discourse Analysis extract 5 (phonology) Deci4life, Audience Interview obviously his character as a character uh is universal so he he could be played by any uh you'd think you could be anywhere in England 'cause there's you know there's youths like him or or youths like that character all over England in every other borough but there was particular things about his character that you could tell he was from Birmingham because of there was certain like slang that he would use certain body postures certain the thing the uh the certain uh the way that he would dress um his demeanour you know what I mean there's there's there's yeah there's certain characteristics about particularly about Birmingham youth that only Birmingham youth had that like you know like um I remember one time I went to Manchester yeah and someone said to me when it someone in Manchester said to me ‘you’re from Birmingham aren't you? I can tell by your character’ you know what I mean and it is true like you can tell the distinctive traits that Londoners uh Brummies or Manchesters or Liverpool whatever whatever borough you're from you pick up certain uh certain uh what's the word I'm looking for (click-shakes fingers) can't think of the word right now yeah the way they carry themselves their swagger yeah that’s what it is their swagger everyone has it you know even though you even though he was a universal character the swagger you could tell he was from Birmingham

26 Conclusions regional communities are not necessarily linguistically or socially homogenous a contemporary snapshot of sociolinguistic reality representing a moment of temporal and spatial mobility speakers have choices, and regionally based performers and audiences may shift between positive and negative attitudes to their home area and linguistic use situationally

27 Warren Weir Olympic 200m bronze medallist [video clip]


Download ppt "West Midlands English: Speech and Society “Tings a gwan”: Linguistic Superdiversity in Contemporary Minority Ethnic Artistic Performances Esther Asprey."

Similar presentations


Ads by Google