This article examines variability in the social factors and internal linguistic constraints on (ING) in African American Language (AAL) based on a comparison of the two Corpus of Regional African American Language (CORAAL) components from Washington, D.C., CORAAL:DCA (recorded 1968–69) and CORAAL:DCB (recorded 2015–17). It also compares DCA with an early study of (ING) in Detroit in 1968. The analysis indicates important differences in how social factors correlate with (ING) over both space and time, as socioeconomic status and gender show differential intersections that distinguish the earlier AAL sample from Washington, D.C., from a comparable AAL sample from Detroit, as well as the D.C. sample a half-century later. Internal constraints from the current CORAAL study tend to align with those indicted in other studies, but some minor constraint effects indicate structural diversity. The comparative results point to a more nuanced understanding of the features that characterize AAL over time and place as well as a more informed perspective on how (ING) functions as a general sociolinguistic variable.

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