Dialect Influences Our Life
Different language communities have some qualities that differentiate them from others. Those differences are called a dialect, and it is a more independent structure than accent (pronunciation). A dialect also includes grammar, syntax, common expressions and vocabulary. Usually, it appears within a regionally and socially isolated or separated group, which creates another language atmosphere. There are no constant distinguishing criteria for a dialect and a language. Every language form is a dialect of an older (mother) language, which defines the name of linguistic group and its specific qualities. The loss of ethnic identity is a serious process that can lead to unpredictable consequences. A dialect is a key to personal identification.
One of the most famous dialects is a Cantonese English. The peculiarities of the Chinese accent and English slang variety add difficulties for the people who try to accommodate in the local society. The structuring of the cross lingual models of the bounds between Cantonese and English are not made. English language by itself has a lot of inner variations that are lexically shortened, transformed or gained additional meanings. Nouns and verbs, including phrasal verifications’ might have no analogues in Cantonese vocabulary. Also, there is a big difference in phonetic aspect, that is why it is complicated to define the exact require or meaning of the information. Thus, a language as not a constant structure with its own lingual code can be learned mostly by formal vocabulary examples.
African American English
Learning about the phenomenon of a dialect is not complete without understanding how it works in the educational system. Cynthia Jackson’s researches on this topic are valuable as her opinion about an American teacher defines communication obstacles. She says: “The teacher does not understand how the history and culture influence behavior and learning styles, the social dynamics between and among the communities in which the children live, the experiences of the children and their schooling”. This example demonstrates an analog of dialect functioning. This is a micro cultural, linguistic derivation that can be learned technically, but is hardly accepted mentally. As a language is a live system based on mentality and mind, there are some reasons for saying that each dialect speaker sees the world signs in various ways.
African American English (AAE) is strongly influenced by African language speakers, namely slaves who were brought to America from the 17th to 19th century. The violent experience of slavery eradicated the basic issues of African linguistic and cultural trends. Thus, AAE is a transformation of English dialects formed by white peasants and slaves who had limited communication with the native speakers and unfulfilled knowledge needs. There is a lot of information about the exact quantity of the speakers as well as comparisons of AAE with Caribbean, English and West African languages. This is caused by some trade relations that were established after the progressive European companies delegated their representatives to the American coasts. Some of the African settlements with their own linguistic peculiarities situated nearby, and the main tool for communication were the creation of key words and terms, which later were transformed into creoles and pidgins.
A pidgin is a medium between different cultures. Creoles and pidgins enriched local dialects and established African American English as a special linguistic system. African American English is used in churches, schools, homes, in streets and in the media. Language users say words, holding them “on the tongue, experimenting with them, playing with them”. In fact, this dialect has not many differences with the Standard English in terms of pronunciation or spelling. African American English contains some Africanisms, which is a local reminding of the linguistic origin of Afro-Americans. For example, the recognition of the importance to understand that “hip” is a real word and “the dozens” has a meaning can help reduce racism and restore other languages.
African American English is actively supported by writers, musicians and speakers. As long as speakers of the dialect feel oppressed, AAE will continue to endure severe denigration and criticism. The perspectives of the dialect can be various among African Americans. Also, AAE can be mistakenly equated with a street slang because this type of communication is widely spread among African Americans. They are aware of common aspects between AAE and Southern White English, but such speech “sounds differently from the standard English”. For example, the loss of African American English skills and improvement of academic English guarantees success at school. For better results, the system should be based on the support of their values and culture. Otherwise, African Americans might feel like they have to neglect their own cultural background. Culturally relevant and culturally responsible education, including the dialect issue must be presented. This process can help the speakers to liberate themselves from oppressive roles.
Latin American Spanish Dialect
There are three main factors that influenced diversification of Latin American Spanish. The first one is the origin of Latin American Spanish dialect with the entire historical basis and the migration process. The second one is the communicational activity with other languages (for example, indigenous languages of the Americans were used in large Spanish colonies, and languages of African slaves and some European languages were used in Latin America). The third factor is a linguistic drift, which is closely connected with the migration issue.
The territory of Spanish America occupied a big area with well-developed trade and migration movements. Economically stressed countries delegated people to discover Spanish American markets and collaborate with the local citizens in the dialogue process. The linguistic impact of Europe was not constant, but it increased after the demographic growth at the end of the 19th –20th century. The city became a valuable center of dialect development as many people moved from margin territories to industrial areas. Even the most rural areas were equipped with media tools such as battery powered radios or TV-sets. Also, the teachers of that period wanted to bring language trends into more isolated territories. Thus, regional and local variations of Spanish were displaced by a pan-urban prestige standard.
Regional and local language variations were strongly visible in Mexico. For example, the Caribbean forms of Spanish, Acapulco dialect and other original dialects of the local villages of Oaxaca and Guerrero declined after the industrialization era came. Nowadays almost all of these variations have been changed by the pan-Mexican language, and only few speakers still use older dialects. One of the brightest examples of the exhibited considerable dialect variation is Argentina. A visible change happened to the “pronunciation of /y/ as [ž] or [š] (Buenos Aires and urban areas) and trill /rr/ in other areas”. In Venezuela, the dialects of the Andean highlands, Caracas and other cities have almost disappeared. The national speech is more homogenous with the influence of education, mass media, technical progress and globalization. This situation leads to the loss of the valuable mental spirituality of citizens and inner national variety.
In fact, there are a few minor territories where the dialect background remained. Due to communication and geographical barriers Honduras and Bolivia saved indigenous and historical linguistic diversity. There are no industrially developed cities where people sacrifice their local identification for appropriate work. This proves a connection between dialect tradition and national development.
Luri: An Iranian Dialect
Arabic countries have a large number of dialects, and their speakers influenced the understanding of the Holy Quran and the establishment of Muslim legislative schools. Also, this area is famous for its eternal fight between different Islamic groups and dynasties. As a result, a lot of dialects were mixed or forgotten.
Luri is an Old Persian dialect that is popular in the “provinces of Luristan and Ilam”. This dialect is special for its survival during wars between dynasties and massive attacks on separated communities of Luri speakers. Later, the local citizens established their influence on the political life of Iran. After the oil industry was developed, the Iranian government conquered Luristan, and Arabic language became dominant. Despite the fact that Luri dialect was supported at school, higher institutions did not recognize it. As a result, some local cultures and social traditions were neglected. In fact, this example represents the government’s intention to unify all ethnic groups and dialects into one state. This can lead to unpredictable inner collisions and consequences such as linguistic variety loss. On the one hand, it can improve communication between ethnic groups, especially in the industrial areas. On the other hand, valuable inheritance such as an indigenous traditional or literature background can be forgotten. The radical policy towards those issues is equally irrational because the minor groups will fight. Thus, the Luri dialect issue needs to be solved in the nearest future.
The problem of language support is obvious and needs a clear solution. A dialect is an ancient linguistic inheritance that establishes mental and social traditions of a small community. Nowadays the world is globalized, which leads to the unification of dialects and languages. The personal ethnic identification is less valuable than before because industrialization demands fast and clear communication between different groups of people.
The educational policy is directed at support of the academic language variance while dialects are saved by enthusiasts. Observing the tendency, it is rational to say that in the near future most of the dialects will be a matter of study of specific institutions. New generations are inclined to neglect their importance and follow modern technologies and career opportunities.