Interview: Walt Wolfram and Jeffrey Reaser on the Dialects of North Carolina

Language and dialects are culture, but like other aspects of our heritage, they have sometimes existed under the cultural radar. In part, this is due to the historical and political subordination of the South. Southern speech has become increasingly different from Northern speech since the Civil War, but it was interpreted as inferior due to the stereotypes of the South by outsiders. The effects of linguistic prejudice are just as harmful as other types of prejudicial attitudes, perhaps more so because their workings are often invisible. It takes time to raise linguistic awareness by countering myths and stereotypes with formal and informal education about the legacy of dialects. North Carolinians deserve to know and understand the truth about its distinct dialect and language legacy. Continue Reading Interview: Walt Wolfram and Jeffrey Reaser on the Dialects of North Carolina

Patrick M. Erben: Learning Foreign Languages Increases Inter-Human Understanding

What matters more than the goal of language learning is its motivation. Instead of regarding “foreign” language instruction as a means for preserving academic privilege or meeting the demands of a global marketplace, we need to embrace the acquisition of languages as a preparation for one of the most fundamental experiences we share as human beings—the encounter with difference. Continue Reading Patrick M. Erben: Learning Foreign Languages Increases Inter-Human Understanding

Weekend Roadtrip #7: Roanoke and Ocracoke

Sunset on the Ferry (photo by Chor Ip via Creative Commons) Don’t worry, just because I had another post this morning doesn’t mean I forgot that this is Thursday, the highly anticipated day of the weekend roadtrip post! Fear not, dear Tar Heel roadtrippers, we’ve got a special “oke”-alicious lineup for this last segment of… Continue Reading Weekend Roadtrip #7: Roanoke and Ocracoke