The historical context

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					The historical context
   the geo-historical context
    > how English reached a position of
       pre-eminence
   the socio-cultural context
    > why a position of pre-eminence will
    last
   the combination of geo-historical and
    socio-cultural strands
    > why English has so many varieties
      Origins within the British Isles
   5th century: northern Europe > English
    spread around the British Isles and mixed
    with Celtic languages: Wales, Cornwall,
    Cumbria, and southern Scotland
   1066: Norman conquest
    English nobles moved to Scotland
   12th century:
    Anglo-Norman knights moved to Ireland
Outwards

   16th century: from the British Isles
    to North America
   1588: end of the reign of Elizabeth I
   5-7 million speakers
   1952: beginning of the reign of
    Elizabeth II
   about 250 million speakers, most of
    them outside the British Isles
Timeline
   Old English 450 - 850
   Late Old English 850 - 1100
   Middle English 1100 - 1450
   Early Modern English 1450 - 1750
   Modern English 1750 - 1950
   Late Modern English 1950 – 2008

   BBC Timeline
   http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/launch_tl_ages
    _english.shtml
     Expeditions
   1584: North Carolina (Walter Raleigh)
   1607: Virginia
    (Tidewater accent: /z/ and /r/)
    e.g. Zummerzet
   1620: Massachusetts and New England
    Pilgrim Fathers
    (silent postvocalic /r/)
   1640: 25,000 immigrants from the
    British Isles
3 main divisions (p. 34)
 New England > Great Lakes
  Northern dialect
 Virginia > Gulf Coast (Texas)

  Southern dialect
 Mid West > California

  Midland dialect
There are many mixed dialect areas but the
  main divisions are still found today
     The frontier people
   17th century: Scots-Irish immigration
    wave
   1776: American Independence
    > 1 out of 7 Scots-Irish
   1790: 4 million people
   1890: 50 million people
    > Sunbelt accent: from Virginia to
    California
    Other influences
   Spanish: west and south west
   French: north and middle regions (Louisiana)
   Dutch: New York < New Amsterdam
   Large numbers of Germans: Pennsylvania
   Africans: south
    > slave trade
    1700: 2,500 black slaves
    1775: 100,000 black slaves
The 19th century

   Irish: 1840s (potato famine)
   Germans: 1848 (failed revolution)
   Italians: 1848 (failed revolution)
   Central European Jews: 1880s
    (pogroms)

1900: 75 million people
1950: 150 million people
       USA
   1990 census: almost 200 million speakers of
    English
   2000 census: almost 215 million speakers of
    English

   English as a sign of American unity > conflict
    with those who want to protect minority
    languages

   20th century:
    movement in support of English as the official
    language of the U.S.
Canada
   new land
       farming
       fishing
       fur-trading
Ongoing conflict with the French
 15th century
 1702 - 1713 Queen Anne’s War
 1754 - 1763 French and Indian War
  > French defeat
  > from New England to Nova Scotia
Canada
   1776 US Declaration of
    Independence
        loyalists moved to New Brunswick
        “late loyalists” moved to Montreal
        (attracted by cheap lands!)


   Many British people identify a
    Canadian accent as American, many
    Americans identify it as British!
Canadian English
   different from British English
   different from American English
   French influence
   French as the co-official language
    (chiefly spoken in Quebec)

Sociolinguistic situation not found in other
  English-speaking countries
       Ottawa and code-switching (Poplack)
    The Caribbean (p. 38)

  black population in the West Indies
1517 the importation of black slaves from
   Africa to work in sugar plantations
   (Spanish colonies)
17th century: Atlantic Triangle (slave
   trade)
     Europe – West Africa – Caribbean
     islands and American coast
http://www.liverpoolmuseums.org.uk/ism/slavery/
    Caribbean English
   1776: American Revolution: 500,000 black
    slaves
   1865: end of US Civil War: 4 million black
    slaves (abolition of slavery)
   Policy of the slave traders > different
    language backgrounds
    > pidgin English
      (English spoken by sailors and slaves)
    > black Creole (southern plantations)
    > Creole forms of French, Spanish, and
    Portuguese
   eventually West Indian speech moved to the
    U.S., Canada, and Britain
   http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/routesofenglish/storysofar/
    programme4_3.shtml
    Australia

   1770 James Cook > first penal colony
    in Sydney (to relieve the pressure
    of overcrowded British prisons)
   1788 first fleet
   1830 130,000 people
   1850 400,000 people
   1900 4 million people
   2002 19 million people
   prisoners from London (Cockney)
    and Ireland
   influence of Aboriginal languages
   late influence of American English
   The country now has a very mixed
    linguistic character
    New Zealand

   1790s European whalers and traders
   1814  Christian missionary work among
          the Maori
 1840    Treaty of Waitangi (first British
          colony)
> 1840 2,000 people
> 1850 25,000 people
> 1900 750,000 people
  (emergence of New Zealand English)
> 1996 3.5 million people (Crystal, 1997)
> 2002 3.8 million people (Crystal, 2003)
    Australian and New Zealand English
   New Zealand: a stronger sense of
    historical relationship with Britain
    > British accent
   New Zealand: growing sense of national
    identity (vs. Australia)
   New Zealand: rights of the Maori
    people
    > Maori vocabulary in New Zealand
    English
    > Maori: 10% of the population
Homework


   Read p. 29-43

   Surf the websites reported here and
    listen to the various accents.

				
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