Article published in:The Pragmatics of Personal Pronouns
Edited by Laure Gardelle and Sandrine Sorlin
[Studies in Language Companion Series 171] 2015
► pp. 27–44
Chapter 2. She said “I don’t like her and her don’t like me”
Complex interpersonal relations expressed through personal pronoun exchange in the Black Country dialect
In the regional variety of English spoken in the Black Country (an area of central England), the object pronoun her is sometimes found in subject function. In a corpus of recorded informal conversations with Black Country dialect speakers, both the Standard English subject pronoun she and its dialect equivalent, her, regularly occurred. This pronoun exchange is not random, but depends on several factors, such as the speaker, the listener, the situational context, the topic, and, most importantly, the speaker’s relation to the referent of she or her. These social and relational concepts bear similarity to those found in the French tu/vous second person binary politeness distinction, since factors such as solidarity, respect and disrespect affect the choice of pronoun.
Published online: 10 November 2015
Brown, Roger & Gilman, Albert
Ellis, Alexander J
Heath, Christopher D
Hernández y Siebold, Nuria
2010 Personal Pronouns in the Dialects of England. A Corpus Study of Grammatical Variation in Spontaneous Speech. PhD dissertation. http://www.freidok.uni-freiburg.de/volltexte/8431/pdf/Dissertation_NuriaHernandez_FreiDok.pdf
Marshall, William Humphrey
2002 We don’ say she, do us? Pronoun exchange – A feature of English dialects? Ms.