Unformatted text preview: Linguistic Identity and Community in American Literature
By James Peterson
Katie Baker Rosa Nguyen Linguistic Identity How do you know who you're reading? How is a character's social identity conveyed in literary works? Four Analytical Tools Author's Identity Stereotypes Situational Context Orthographic Practices Author's Identity Personal experience Insight into social situations First hand knowledge of sociolinguistics Stereotypes Typically tools of oppression Can be used to point out ignorance Situational Context
Environment and social situation Orthography Specifies the correct way of using a specific writing system (script) to write the language Speech can be represented through misspellings and/or excessive punctuation i.e. "Dey be chillin'" "Eye dialect" can appear incorrect Vernaculars are governed by their own rules Vocabulary Native American literary identity Utilize Autobiography Grammar and Vocabulary Example: Indian Killer by Sherman Alexie Native American Grew up on a reservation Standard greetings: "cousin", "Which tribe you are?" Latino/Latina American Literary Identity Stereotypes sociolinguistic biases favor languages with their own nation Eye dialect mistake: circumstantial vs. intellectual Vocabulary use of Spanish words and phrases as clues to ethnicity Power of image Codeswitching Language represent social identity and strategic identity African American Literary Identity Situational context realistic features such as the dozens to distinguish/ establish identity Eye dialect to textually invisible vernacular Underground signifying Orthography Beneath surface of standard orthography is linguistic structure and vernacular dexterity of A.A.V.E. Discussion Questions What do you think accounts for the differences in literary language for each culture? Think about your own culture, and share how a character's social identity may be represented using the tools presented. What would be some examples of tools used in Asian American literature to represent ethnic identity? ...
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This note was uploaded on 09/08/2010 for the course ASIA 122 at San Jose State.