Edited by Sandra Jansen and Lucia Siebers
[Studies in Language Variation 21] 2019
► pp. 139–156
Chapter 8. African American English in nineteenth-century Liberia
Processes of change in a transported dialect
This chapter investigates African American English as it was transported to Liberia in the nineteenth century based on vernacular Liberian letters compiled in the Corpus of Older African American Letters. The analysis focuses in particular on the individual variation in the verbal paradigm of an emigrant family. The findings show that family members evince similar changes in progress transported from the American South but that social changes induced by the migratory movement have resulted in changes with regard to verbal -s marking that take very different paths of developments in two generations of the same family.