This study explores quotative system norms within Latino communities and African American communities in two cities in North Carolina, Durham and Hickory, to identify how social and ethnic distribution intersects with regional distribution in such systems. Quotative frames were transcribed from sociolinguistic interviews conducted with 35 Latino and 27 African American participants between the ages of 9 and 21. The quotative verb form and the tense, person, and content of the quotation were analyzed as a basis for examining its distribution. Correlating Latino participants' length of residency in the United States to quotative usage provided insight into the possible effect of second-language acquisition on quotative systems. Quotative be like was found to be grammaticalized as a reporter of direct speech and thought in all communities and was favored in the first person for the Latino speech communities, mirroring prior studies of Anglo communities. Results indicate that Latino and African American quotative systems are aligning with other systems identified in the United States with respect to the types of verbal quotatives used and content constraints, though each group and region varies in the application of previously observed constraints.
Localized Patterns for Global Variants: The Case of Quotative Systems of African American and Latino Speakers
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MARY ELIZABETH KOHN, HANNAH ASKIN FRANZ; Localized Patterns for Global Variants: The Case of Quotative Systems of African American and Latino Speakers. American Speech 1 August 2009; 84 (3): 259–297. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00031283-2009-022
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