Laurie Curtis ENGL 1304 M. Allison 3/30/2011 Influences on My Dialect The use of varying languages around the globe is a way to express one’s personal uniqueness and even cultural background. As Americans we tend to be more welcoming of ethnic diversity in our country, however, when it comes to academic writing, a language barrier is not typically praised. Students are usually not encouraged to write in their own dialect and are expected to have achieved the mastery of Standard Written English (SWE) without much leeway at all.

While I feel that I have mastered SWE, it would still be nice to be able to incorporate some of my own language into an academic paper. Though my primary language is English, I am also very proficient in Spanish. Since foreign languages happen to be my favorite study, I can read and understand things in tens of languages. When speaking or writing to my friends that are of other ethnicities, I always find myself talking to them using bits and pieces of their native language.

Along with school, another factor that undoubtedly influences my dialect is my geographic location — the south. While I am not a fan of horseback riding or a lot of other southern things, I say “y’all” probably twenty times a day and say “coke” instead of “pop”. My friends, my family, and pop culture also influence my daily dialect. But another aspect of my language is how I converse with people on the internet. I use things like “lol”, “lmao”, and “haha” everyday.

I’d say it’s a bad habit of mine, but it’s pretty widely accepted and I have yet to find anything better to replace those acronyms when I’m “ROFLing” after watching the Rebecca Black video. A lot of your dialect has to do with what is your native language, where you come from, where you live, who you hang out with, and how you spend your free time. These were just several ways in which my personal dialect has been influenced by many factors around me. I believe language is ever changing, and I’m sure my dialect will, too, evolve over the years.

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