The United States of English By Rosemarie Ostler

  • Narrated by: Christa Lewis
  • Length: 11 hrs and 9 mins
  • Release date: 09-12-23

The United States of English By Rosemarie Ostler AudioBook summary

The story of how English became American—and how it became Southern, Bostonian, Californian, African American, Chicano, elite, working-class, urban, rural, and everything in between

By the time of the Revolution, the English that Americans spoke was recognizably different from the British variety. Americans added dozens of new words to the language, either borrowed from Native Americans (raccoon, persimmon, caucus) or created from repurposed English (backwoods, cane brake, salt lick). Americans had their own pronunciations (bath rhymed with hat, not hot) and their own spelling (honor, not honour), not to mention a host of new expressions that grew out of the American landscape and culture (blaze a trail, back track, pull up stakes). Americans even invented their own slang, like stiff as a ringbolt to mean drunk. American English has continued to grow and change ever since.


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