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Hip-Hop Nation


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Hip-Hop Nation

  1. 1. Hip-Hop Nation Language and Culture WTUC
  2. 2. Standard American English <ul><li>What's Standard English? According to The American Heritage Dictionary it's the speech of  educated speakers. </li></ul><ul><li>So  where do we find the model? Chicago? Miami? New York? L.A.? </li></ul>
  3. 3. Accepted Standard <ul><li>American Heritage suggests there's no single, universally accepted standard for how to speak or write American English. Even so, school systems, professional communicators and businesses all have standards and, not surprisingly, the rules (at least for grammar) do not vary dramatically from place to place. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Language as Prestige <ul><li>Language expresses who  we are, and who we want to be. </li></ul><ul><li>It can also unite or divide us. </li></ul><ul><li>We sometimes label the language of larger social groups a social dialect, with differences in pronunciation and usage based on social class, ethnic factors, contact with other languages, gender or age </li></ul>
  5. 5. Language Crossing — Borrowing Identity <ul><li>Linguists study &quot;crossing&quot; to understand how and why individuals mimic the speech of another group. </li></ul><ul><li>Borrowing another language variety is often an expression of identity. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Crossing: Language and Ethnicity Among Adolescents <ul><li>In his 1995 book Crossing: Language and Ethnicity Among Adolescents , Ben Rampton describes language crossing as the practice of using a language variety that belongs to another group. Crossing includes a wide range of sociolinguistic practices such as the &quot;outgroup use of prestigious minority codes&quot; (for example, white suburban teenagers using African-American English speech markers to affiliate with hip hop culture) and pejorative secondary foreigner talk (the mocking use of a foreign accent to convey distance from a particular ethnic group). </li></ul>
  7. 7. Marking <ul><li>It also includes practices such as “marking,” copying a language variety out of context to index a type of person who is different from the speaker and/or intended hearers (Mitchell-Kernan, Morgan). </li></ul>
  8. 8. Hark! Do I Hear a Hip Hop? <ul><li>the construction of identity among white, middle-class young people who affiliate with hip hop. </li></ul><ul><li>young people who live in predominantly white middle-class and upper-middle-class neighborhoods in and around New York City. Yet they affiliate with a cultural form that has its origins in urban black working-class communities in, for instance, the borough of the Bronx (Potter 1995, Samuels 1991). </li></ul><ul><li>It is difficult to generalize about the class origins of hip hop because quite a few rap artists are college-educated and middle class, but there is a general sense that it originates largely in “the street” — read black urban ghetto (Alim). </li></ul><ul><li>Their distance from its origins poses some psychological challenges for white middle-class hip hoppers who are socially and physically removed from hip hop’s creative and ideological space. </li></ul>
  9. 9. White Hip Hoppers <ul><li>Significantly, white hip hoppers draw on a language style that is clearly derived from African-American Vernacular English (AAVE) — a variety with which they have little direct contact, and that is stigmatized in mainstream U.S. society.   </li></ul>
  10. 10. Slang <ul><li>The variety of speech that they are targeting is highly influenced by hip hop culture and contains a wide range of hip hop “slang” terms in addition to pronunciation and grammar that are specific to the speech of young urban African-American hip hoppers.   </li></ul>
  11. 11. Performance of African-American English speech <ul><li>White hip hoppers’ exposure to this language takes place principally through electronic media, such as MTV, rap music CDs and Black Entertainment Television (BET), rather than through direct face-to-face contact with native speakers. </li></ul><ul><li>In effect, white hip hoppers’ speech can be seen as a performance of African-American English speech. Furthermore, many aspects of white hip hoppers’ personal style, gestures, ways of walking and even attitudes are informed by their conceptions of blackness. </li></ul>
  12. 12. White American Hip-Hop <ul><li>There is an example of invariant “be,” an aspectual marker in African-American English that signals a habitual or repetitive action (Rickford). </li></ul><ul><li>We also see an example of copula absence (I don’t know what they Ø talkin’ about). </li></ul><ul><li>Another point of interest is the speaker’s use of ain’t — a feature of AAVE and many other vernacular varieties of English. </li></ul><ul><li>Finally, we see a typical hip hop discourse marker — “ you know what I’m sayin’ ” — that draws interlocutors into the conversation.  We’ll close with an extended example of this type of speech. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Watch a short clip: Crossing in NYC
  14. 14. Speech Sample: Hip-Hop <ul><li>PJ:People — people be callin’ me a wannabe, but I don't know what they Ø talkin’ about, you know. I'm just doing my thing. I'm just handlin’ my business. What I do ain't nobody's business, you know what I'm sayin’, except for mine. I handle my own. That's what I'm about. You know, what I'm about ain't no — but, hey, I'm — I'm handlin’ my own. You know, I'm livin’ my life the way I want to live. Ain't nobody got to tell me nothin’, you know what I'm sayin’? </li></ul>
  15. 15. Hip Hop Nation <ul><li>A Scholar's View Sociolinguists are intensely interested in the language of Hip Hop Nation, a highly fluid, creative and constantly changing dialect. </li></ul><ul><li>H. Samy Alim explains how devotees “devise innovative ways to slice the system with the syntax.&quot; </li></ul>
  16. 16. Hip Hop Nation Language <ul><li>the language of Hip Hop Culture in the United States, is a “universoul-sonic force” being adopted and adapted by youth around the planet, in countries as distant and diverse as Mexico, Cuba, France, Bulgaria, Ghana, Pakistan, Japan, Australia and many more. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Hip Hop Cultural Movement <ul><li>The Hip Hop Cultural Movement, called “Black noise” by Black American scholar Tricia Rose in 1994, is a decade later termed “global noise” by European scholar Tony Mitchell. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Black Language <ul><li>One of the San Francisco Bay Area’s hottest and most enduring Hip Hop artists, JT the Bigga Figga, relates the language of Hip Hop Culture to “Black Language.” He roots the creation of this unique linguistic form in what sociolinguist Geneva Smitherman called “an Africanized form of English reflecting Black America’s linguistic-cultural African heritage and the conditions of servitude, oppression and life in America.” </li></ul>
  19. 19. Watch ‘Pro-Nasty’
  20. 20. Hip Hop Nation Language <ul><li>Sociolinguists are intensely interested in Hip Hop Nation Language. This goes out to all Hip Hop Headz, whom I call “street linguists” and “word warriors.” They are the primary source of our knowledge on Hip Hop Nation Language, constantly adoring, evaluating and creating words … always devising innovative ways to use words as weapons, to slice the system with the syntax - and to put fear in the hearts of those who be frontin’ on their fierce phonology! </li></ul>