SoConDi: Hayley Heaton on Lebanese English in the American South


By Andries W. Coetzee
Feb 24, 2013 Bookmark and Share

Hayley Heaton

Hayley Heaton will present in SoConDi this Friday. Her presentation will focus on research that she conducted during her MA studies at North Carolina State University under venerable sociolinguist and American dialectologist Walt Wolfram. Haley will discuss the Lebanese American immigrant community in North Carolina and how they have adapted (or not) linguistically to the speech norms of the American South. Full information about her presentation, including a title and abstract, is given below.

 

What: SoConDi meeting, Haley Heaton presenting

Where: Lorch 403

When: Friday, March 1st, 3 pm

Lebanese English in the American South: Dialect accommodation and the recession of substrate

A cohesive Lebanese community has existed in North Carolina for over a century, raising issues about the role of substrate features and the accommodation of Southern English. The acoustic analysis of vowel systems, syllable timing, and voice-onset timing (VOT) along with the analysis of selected morphosyntactic features demonstrates that Lebanese born in North Carolina do not maintain substrate influence. Selected aspects of Southern vowels are accommodated, but accommodation avoids socially stigmatized grammatical features. The pattern, which contrasts with other Southern ethnolinguistic repertoires, is explained in terms of community values that underscore upward mobility and educational and social status achievement.