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Saturday, October 12 • 11:20am - 11:45am
King: Placing race: Constructing African American identity via vocalic variation

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Placing race: Constructing African American identity via vocalic variation

This paper addresses critiques of homogenization in the study of African American Language by assessing African Americans’ use of vocalic variables to construct different identities. Drawing on sociolinguistic interviews, I examine regionalized, racialized, and classed vocalic patterns among three personae: The Mobile Black Professional (MBP), The Hood Kid (HK), and The Biker. The comparison of vocalic variables across these black personae reveals complex ways in which race articulates with regional identity. The constructions of HKs rely on a regional variable that is racialized as black, while the constructions of The Biker and MBPs’ rely on the uptake of the linguistic capital racialized as white in the linguistic markets of their respective generations. I argue that vocalic variation is mediated by personae, which draw on different constellations of semiotic resources for different social ends.

Speakers
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Sharese King

University of Chicago


Saturday October 12, 2019 11:20am - 11:45am
EMU Crater Lake N
  • Session type Talk
  • Chair: Nicole Holliday


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