Black Talk

Black Talk: Words and Phrases from the Hood to the Amen Corner
TitleBlack Talk: Words and Phrases from the Hood to the Amen Corner
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2000
AuthorSmitherman, Geneva
Number of Pages305
PublisherMariner Books
CityNew York
Publication Languageeng
ISBN or ASIN Number978
Copies at the Archive3

From Library Journal The speech of African Americans has been defined by many terms--black English, Ebonics, African American vernacular, and African American language. Smitherman (Talkin' That Talk: Language, Culture, and Education in African America) traces the history of black language, describes its unique features, and demonstrates its impact on "standard English" in her excellent introduction to this volume. She also provides a provocative discussion on the recent Ebonics' debate--whether black youth should be instructed in their "native language" as well as "standard English." The bulk of Black Talk, however, is a dictionary of black language. Unlike most dictionaries, this one "concentrates on the historical and contemporary significance of words and phrases in the context of African American culture and the Black experience" rather than providing the origin or etymological history of a word or phrase. This revised edition (the first was published in 1994) gives hundreds of definitions for words in current usage, including recent additions like "jiggy," "flava," "benjamins," and "D.W.B." (Driving While Black). An essential volume for all libraries; smaller libraries that own the earlier edition need not purchase the update. -Louis J. Parascandola, Long Island Univ., Brooklyn, NY Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.