Linguistic inequality refers to the unequal access to, and regulation of, language in society. This type of inequality exists when members of one language group are discriminated against by members of another language group because their speech is considered “unacceptable” or “incorrect” due to its different structure, vocabularies, or grammar rules. In many parts of the world today, linguistic inequality takes the form of linguistic discrimination which denies individuals opportunities in education and employment based on how they speak a certain language or dialect.
African American English (AAE) is a hot topic for discussion regarding linguistic inequality because it has been historically viewed as unacceptable and incorrect by mainstream society. AAE is derived from West African languages brought over by slaves during the Transatlantic Slave Trade and evolved alongside other dialects throughout the years. Although similar to standard English in many ways, AAE can be distinguished through pronunciation differences such as stressing different syllables than standard English conventions; grammar differences like dropping -ing endings; and lexical differences such as using words with specific meanings not found in Standard English (e.g., “ax” meaning ask). These features have often resulted in negative stereotypes about how African Americans speak their native tongue which has led to outright discrimination against them.
What is Linguistic Inequality? How is African American English (AAE) a hot topic for discussion of linguistic inequality and what are the reasons for it being viewed in such a way?
In education settings for example, students who use AAE may be discouraged from speaking this way even though it is their first language since educators often view it as an obstacle towards academic success rather than a tool for learning new concepts. This can lead to students feeling uncomfortable expressing themselves orally at school and being unfairly judged based on how they communicate rather than what they are saying which perpetuates feelings of alienation from dominant white culture that has traditionally held control over educational institutions.. As a result, students may struggle academically if they cannot make themselves understood due to difficulties conveying their ideas effectively in Standard English while also having difficulty understanding lessons taught only in that form – leading to lower academic performance overall compared with those who primarily use Standard English among other forms available within the school system itself..
Moreover, linguistically-inequality can manifest beyond educational contexts into everyday life interactions between people who come from different backgrounds – especially when one individual speaks predominately Standard English while another does not feel comfortable speaking this way due either cultural reasons or fear of judgmental reactions from others – making communication difficult across both sides ultimately preventing mutual comprehension between them.. On top this issue further compounded by power dynamics typically existing where one party holds more social status than another creating an uneven playing field that works against those who do not converse via conventional means thus limiting equal opportunity social interaction functioning here serve exclusionary purpose reinforcing existing class divisions already present wider broader society.. All these issues highlight needfor greater awareness dialogue surrounding roles playedby diversity communication contribute towards addressing long-standing issueof linguisticequality countries aroundworld continue strive create fairer environment all citizens regardless background heritage may live peacefully pursue legitimate aspirations life accordance respective national laws governing each case