LINGUIST List 32.733

Sat Feb 27 2021

Books: Middle-Class African American English: Weldon

Editor for this issue: Billy Dickson <>

Date: 24-Feb-2021
From: Rachel Tonkin <>
Subject: Middle-Class African American English: Weldon
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Title: Middle-Class African American English
Published: 2021
Publisher: Cambridge University Press

Book URL:

Author: Tracey L. Weldon
Hardback: ISBN: 9780521895316 Pages: Price: U.S. $ 110.00
Hardback: ISBN: 9780521895316 Pages: Price: U.K. £ 85.00
Hardback: ISBN: 9780521895316 Pages: Price: Europe EURO 99.20

African American English (AAE) is a major area of research in linguistics, but until now, work has primarily been focused on AAE as it is spoken amongst the working classes. From its historical development to its contemporary context, this is the first full-length overview of the use and evaluation of AAE by middle class speakers, giving voice to this relatively neglected segment of the African American speech community. Weldon offers a unique first-person account of middle class AAE, and highlights distinguishing elements such as codeswitching, camouflaged feature usage, Standard AAE, and talking/sounding 'Black' vs. 'Proper'. Readers can hear authentic excerpts and audio prompts of the language described through a wide range of audio files, which can be accessed directly from the book's page using QR technology or through the book's online Resource Tab. Engaging and accessible, it will help students and researchers gain a broader understanding of both the African American speech community and the AAE continuum.

1. Introduction; 2. The study of middle-class AAE; 3. 'Talking black' as public performance – not so lame; 4. Language and double-consciousness – a personal account; 5. Race, class, and camouflaged divergence; 6. Sounding black; 7. Looking ahead.

Linguistic Field(s): Sociolinguistics

Subject Language(s): English (eng)

Written In: English (eng)

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Page Updated: 27-Feb-2021