Why do black Americans talk like this?


Why do black Americans talk like this?
I'm not exactly sure what it's called, but it might be, Ebonics. Regardless of what it's called, it's a type of slang/broken-English. I've always been curious why blacks choose to speak like this. I get that there's some roots/history behind this, but this is now 2018, soon to be 2019.
Also, I've seen this way of speaking, turned on and off like a light switch. For instance: I doubt you'd hear a black lawyer talking like this in court, or a black doctor talking like this to a patient.
So what are your thoughts?

There = dare
Door = Doe
Before = Befoe
With you = Whichoo
This = dis
That = dat

Please be respectful and thoughtful.

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Most Helpful Guys

  • A lot of older, white, Deep South Southerners speak almost exactly the same way. As for blacks, on the barrier islands in South Carolina and Georgia, they still speak Gullah, an African language, where many black folks families originally came from. Add Gullah to a real deep South accent and it's no wonder many blacks speak that way, because the accent you learned before you were 5 is hard to lose. I've lived in Georgia most of my life, but lived in Virginia as a kid, and if I'm not careful, still call a house a "hoose."

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    • But I've seen them turn it off like a switch. This leads me to believe it's completely optional.

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    • I believe you. I knew that blacks in Africa sold black slaves, but it's not something that liberals like to talk about.
      I also read in a history book, that blacks were NOT the first race that Americans tried to use as slaves. Blacks were just the ONLY race that would go along with it!

      The other races just flat out wouldn't do it! If the option was death or a life of slavery, I'd gladly choose death.

    • Avalonbob, most educated and upper class people speaks the standard accent. But some upper and middle-class people do code switching. People raised in poverty with little education are usually not so good in code switching. It's also different versions of AAVE. Some sounds more "extreme" or "strong" than others.

      I've heard the story about the first slave owner in the US before. Didn't surprise me. Humans from all over the world have owned slave, so the skin color doesn't have anything to do with it.

  • In the past when the first Africans came to the US they spoke like that because English-speakers didn't use much time on learning them English. In addition they usually didn't get any education since a slave needed to be able to work on the farms, not read and write. It was also easier for the English-speakers to control them when they couldn't read, write or speak the standard way. Illiterate people can't send letters to each others as easily and people speaking differently have difficulty getting a normal job. When both the first generation Africans, their children, grandchildren and so on didn't get properly schooling, they had to pick up the English language hearing it.

    If they were unsure about grammars, pronunciation etc., they made their own way to say it. AAVE (African-American vernacular English/Ebonics) have it's own grammar rules and has been a sociolect for a long time.

    Nowadays people use it because they either thinks it sounds cool, wants to stand out, are proud of their ancestry or wants to keep an unique culture they can be proud of. It's the same reason why some Norwegians eats bland food although Norwegians have more wealth now than in the past. It's both because of some likes it and cultural reasons. It's like a tradition. Cultures and traditions makes people stand together in a community. It's human's way to socialize I suppose.

    What Norwegians; especially elderly (regardless of wealth) eats:
    Why do black Americans talk like this?

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    • Ebonics has grammar rules?
      If Ebonics was a sign of uneducated people, I just don't understand why someone in 2018 would embrace that part of their heritage.

    • It's because they likes the way it sounds and are proud of their ancestors surviving slavery, getting freed and the ebonic speakers wants to stand out as an own group. Immigrants and refugees in Norway don't always want to end up like ethnic Norwegians, so therefor they've made their own way of speaking too which is Kebab-Norwegian.

      Kebab-Norwegian: Wolla pottet, har du sjofe en schmø kæbe?
      Norwegian: Hei hviting, har du sett en pen jente eller?
      English: Hello white person, have you seen a pretty girl?

      Kebab-Norwegian is a combination between Norwegian, Arabic, Berber, Turkish, Iraqi, Spanish, Pashto, Persian, Urdu and Punjab. It has it's own vocabulary, grammar rules, pronunciation etc. It's mostly the vocabulary and the intonation that makes it very different from standard Norwegian.

Most Helpful Girl

  • Its actually a southern thing, I think—while you see it portrayed more in movies as being particularly of the African American ethnical culture, it’s a popular way of talking in the south (save for the mansion dwellers).

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    • Well, in the North, only the blacks speak like that.

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What Guys Said 9

  • The same reasons any other accent/dialect arises... the evolution of pronunciation of words, for whatever reason, and then passed-down to off-spring. Unless the off-spring are in an environment with another accent/dialect, the will continue to use the one that is native to them.

    All hearing humans everywhere and everywhen are like that.

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    • Yes, I'm sure it is passed down. Then why do they pick and choose when to use that language? Why not all the time?

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    • No, I've seen black people pick and choose when to use Ebonics. It changes minute to minute, depending on who's around.

    • Exactly. That's my point. The human mind adapts to speak with the audience nearby. I do the same thing.

  • Folks are folks no matter where you go and everywhere there are folks there are peculiarities in their speech. They are called dialects.

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    • Is bitch, hoe, muthafucka part of a dialect, too?

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    • It IS and us them thing. I'm white! lol
      If I were black, then I wouldn't have to ask.
      And I don't think black people are nearly as fragile as you seem to think.
      And yes, I'd love for a black person to ask me about my culture.

    • Man folks are folks all around the world. I've known black kids adopted into white families and we were in prison together. I about fell over when he started talking about all the black people making him nervous.

  • Ax= Ask
    Ite= Alright
    What's up widdit?= I still don't know what that means.

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    • LOL, I forgot about those.

  • What you're describing is actually more of a southern dialect than an ethnically based slang

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    • What then is Ebonics? Examples?

    • I was drawing a line between dialectic pronunciation and actual slang.
      i. e. yo, hoopdie, chicken-head

  • Cuz da whyte mane be opressin us fo al dis time yo.

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    • I would have thought that 8 years of having a black person, would have ended dat.

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    • If you grow up in the hood, than you’d most likely speak like that because everyone around you is speaking like that. It’s the area you’re in.

    • @Highsxhoolstudent15 Well its not like we keep creating these ghettos for them, they do it to themselves.

  • Cause they think it's cool.

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    • And I think it has a LOT to do with peer pressure.

    • No. When non black people talk like this, it’s because THEY think it’s cool.

  • Cuz they's black

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    • Speaking of that, why do they call everyone their, "Cuz?"

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    • I'm not sure.

    • By their last name

  • It's that "soul".

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    • It's all starting to make sense.

  • It’s how they talk between themselves, like how children talk street!!!
    But you are right, black people and children talk normally in real life and then become some Jamaican native when they are together

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    • Why do you suppose that is?

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    • I’m from America but live in England, the divide there is 50 years behind what it is here

    • The divide?

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