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date: 19 November 2017

Abstract and Keywords

African American Standard English (AASE) can be defined for introductory purposes as a standard variety (composed of many subvarieties) of American English that has distinctively Black grammatical features (DBGFs), such as stressed BIN. DBGFs are found uniquely, or nearly so, in African American English (AAE) varieties. Overwhelmingly, the speakers of AAE are African American, though there are exceptions. For the most part, no one but an AAE specialist could detect the DBGFs in AASE because they usually involve grammatical camouflage: they occur in sentential contexts where they appear to be unremarkable grammatical features that also occur in non-Black varieties of English. It is essential to draw attention to the existence of AASE since many linguists, other scholars, and layperson typically make a distinction between AAE and Standard English, erroneously implying that all AAE is vernacular (i.e., nonstandard).

Keywords: African American English (AAE), African American Standard English (AASE), distinctively Black grammatical features (DBGFs), grammatical camouflage, stressed BIN, Standard English

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