Results 1 to 7 of 7

Thread: new trend?

  1. #1
    sezamek is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    12
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default new trend?

    I've noticed a recent trend around native speakers (especially from the USA) using "was" as the past form to all persons, even in plural. "they was" "you was" "we was".. I get it when someone says something similar by mistake, but they use it as it was totally correct. So many years of teaching students that the plural of to be in the past is "were" and here we go heaaring people say "you was"..

  2. #2
    bhaisahab's Avatar
    bhaisahab is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Retired English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    21,670
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: new trend?

    Quote Originally Posted by sezamek View Post
    I've noticed a recent trend around native speakers (especially from the USA) using "was" as the past form to all persons, even in plural. "they was" "you was" "we was".. I get it when someone says something similar by mistake, but they use it as it was totally correct. So many years of teaching students that the plural of to be in the past is "were" and here we go heaaring people say "you was"..
    I know, dispiriting isn't it?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    59
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: new trend?

    I'm afraid, sezamek, that us native speakers have been messing with our verbs since the beginning of time. All you have to do, if you don't believe me, is watch an old American western or read a Dickens novel, and you'll find lots of fun variations on the standard, which, after all, is itself only a super-imposed dialect. My favourite is the traditional West Country (= southwest England) conjugation of the present of 'be': I be, you be, he be, she be, it be, we be, they be. There ain't nuthin' like English as she is spoke!

  4. #4
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    18,261
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: new trend?

    Quote Originally Posted by iconoclast View Post
    you'll find lots of fun variations on the standard, which, after all, is itself only a super-imposed dialect.
    I think of standard English as being emergent and consensual, rather than superimposed. I think most native English speakers would consider that they speak close enough to Standard English without feeling that their native dialect is being imposed upon by something artificial.

  5. #5
    sezamek is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    12
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: new trend?

    Well I know about all the dialects and variations, here I was referring to people.. let's say teenagers and aged 20- 30-something.. talking in such a way generally, and as far as I know they don't come from any specific region where any noticeable dialect is spoken

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    59
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: new trend?

    Hi, again! The term 'super-imposed dialect' is a sociolingiuistic term reflecting the fact that Standard English is the prestige variety of the language, lording it over regional varieties through its use by officialdom, academia, and literature - as someone once quipped "a language is a dialect with an army and a navy", but could have thrown in centralised government, education authority, and printing press, as well, for Standard English is really a written norm.

    If the West Country example seems too extreme, it's still a fact that many native speakers have merrily muddled their conjugations and mangled their verbphrases in a non-Standard fashion for centuries. To be sure, consistently below-Standard speech is associated with less well-educated speakers, but the Colloquial speech of anybody will contain non-Standard forms.
    Last edited by iconoclast; 23-Jun-2009 at 22:44. Reason: error

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    94
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: new trend?

    I am a native English speaker from the USA, and use of "was" for every tense sounds uneducated to many native speakers who use the language correctly. Unfortunately, a lot of the media that is being exported to other countries (movies, music, etc.) seem to be using the word in this way. Tied right into that is pronouncing the word "ask" as "axe", as in "let me axe you a question".

    It is sad. Particularly for the fact that many people are speaking this way on purpose because they think it sounds hip.

Similar Threads

  1. 150-cultural trend
    By matilda in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 13-Jul-2009, 21:06
  2. trend of the number of migrant workers
    By KLPNO in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 24-Oct-2008, 22:22
  3. in upward trend / in an upward trend ?
    By musicgold in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 17-Apr-2008, 11:38
  4. trend
    By peter123 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 26-Jan-2008, 13:24
  5. trend
    By blouen in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 03-Jul-2007, 01:07

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Hotchalk