Ebonics and it's connotaions and effects in society.

Essay by daybabeUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, March 2003

download word file, 4 pages 3.7 1 reviews


I have chosen to concentrate on a fairly new issue, the language known as Ebonics. There have always been changes in the English language. This is how the language came about and evolved from standard British English to American English.

During the last few years, as the world has become more sensitive to the rights

of minorities, women, animals, etc. a new form of changes has taken place. These

changes have become known as Political Correctness.

Ebonics (i.e. Black English) is the political correct version of Afro-American English. To fully understand Ebonics, some historical background is needed. One has to have some knowledge on how the English language has developed in America. Furthermore one has to be aware how stereotypical thinking and racism influence the American society.

Technically speaking, Ebonics is the style of The English language spoken by Afro-Americans. The word Ebonics, origins from the words "Ebony" and "Phonics", the name referring to the color black and to the representation of sounds with symbols.

The word Ebonics was invented in 1973 as to describe an Afro-American speech

pattern with roots in West Africa, but it was not until 18 December 1997 ? when the Californian Oakland School Board released its declaration on language development policy ? Ebonics suddenly came into instant fame.(Oakland Unified School District Board of Education)

In a formal statement, the Oakland School Board recognizes Ebonics as the

primary language of many of its students and announces their intention of teaching their students in this primary language, in order to help the student to master standard English. The statement included this controversial sentence "?African Language Systems are genetically based and not a dialect of English", a remark that immediately raised a public outcry: The old confrontation of comparing race and intelligence flared up in...