Mapping American Dialects
Episode 6 of English in America

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From English in America to American English
Episode 3 of English in America
Explore how the English settlers gradually transformed themselves from colonists to American citizens, and how English in America became American English. Myriad dialects began to coalesce, and there was an explosion of linguistic creativity, especially in the creation of dialect words - Americanisms like "raccoon" and "bifocal".
The Foundations of American English
Episode 2 of English in America
The main English dialect hubs in the new American colonies were centered on Jamestown, New England, and Philadelphia. See how these were influenced by contact with Native American languages, Spanish, French, Dutch, and the West African languages of slaves, and learn about the five stages of development English dialects typically…
Defining American English Dialects
Episode 1 of English in America
Begin with a big-picture overview of the American English dialect map, asking as we explore: What is the difference between a language, a dialect, and an accent? Discover the intricate rules governing all linguistic systems, and consider how and why some varieties of language become valued standards and others are…
English in America - A Linguistic History
Welcome to the enthralling world of linguistics. If you've ever been curious how words like "awesomesauce" ever came to be, let alone made it into the Oxford English Dictionary, or if you've ever wondered why you say "firefly" and someone else calls the same insect a "lightning bug," English in…
Ethnicity and American English
Episode 7 of English in America
America has always been a land of immigrants, and American English has been shaped since its earliest days by contact among immigrants from all over the British Isles and from around the world. Consider how the languages of the many immigrants who poured into America in the 19th and early…
Where Is General American English?
Episode 5 of English in America
Our journey continues with the westward expansion of American English, as the New England dialect spreads across the North, the South extends to the Southwest, and people in the middle increasingly intermingle. Along the way, dialect mixing and leveling lead to increasing standardization, or at least the ideal of a…
Building Basic Translation Skills
Episode 7 of Greek 101
Review what you have learned up until now. Then try your hand at translating from English to Greek--first into Homeric Greek and then into Koine, noticing the key differences between the two dialects. Close by reading the opening passage of the Gospel of John in its unadapted original Koine.
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The culture of New Orleans represents the mixing of many rich traditions: French, Spanish, African, Irish, Italian. At the heart of this unique culture lie its speechways, the subject of Yeah You Rite!, a close-up video profile of a single language community. New Orleans English has been influenced by the…
Additional Patterns of the First Declension
Episode 4 of Greek 101
Look at two variations in the pattern of the first declension--one used in Homeric Greek and the other in Koine, the Greek of the New Testament. Despite being separated by almost a thousand years, the two dialects have remarkable continuity.
Aztec Hieroglyphs—A Recent Decipherment
Complex views of Aztec civilization are too often replaced with a one-note narrative that focuses only on the practice of human sacrifice. Look more closely at the system Aztecs invented to write their Nahuatl language, which is still spoken by more than one million modern Mexicans in the form of…
Where Is American English Headed?
Episode 12 of English in America
Secure as a major player on the world stage, the U.S. can now look inward and focus on the intra-national linguistic and cultural diversity that's been there since English speakers first arrived on the American continent. Discover that regional dialect differentiation is actually increasing, not receding, even in the Internet…
African American English
Episode 8 of English in America
Explore the indelible linguistic effects of the peoples of African descent who were brought to America as slaves, who went on to develop a richly expressive language variety that today is emulated by young people across the world--African American English. Contrary to common misunderstandings, this well-studied dialect is governed by…