Delores Handy word of the day



Larry Davidson said...

Y'know, I enjoy reading your blog, Eeka, but this business of continually making fun of Delores Handy has gotten really old. So she happens to speak a different dialect of American English than you... why does that deserve this repeated attempt at humiliation? The fact is that vowels are pronounced quite differently all over the country, and there's a wide swath of the upper midwest (for example) where "in" sounds like "en" to New Englanders' ears. One of the glories of American English is that we don't have an official standard, unlike some other countries, so why not lighten up and just realize that everyone doesn't have to talk like you?

OK, I was trying not to rant, but I'm not sure that I succeeded. I guess I'm just offended as a linguist and perhaps also as a civil libertarian.

Anonymous said...

Wert-Heimer. Maybe that is the true German pronunciation, but I have never heard it pronounced that way on NPR.

Delores Handy has listened to her for years and she cannot pronounce her name.

She doesn't speak a different dialect. Dolores stumbles over pre-written words and cannot pronounce common words.

eeka said...

No humiliation intended, and none taken by most folks judging by the fan mail from her WBUR colleagues. But have you really listened to her? She doesn't speak a consistent dialect or sociolect, even within the same sentence, which is why it's intriguing. It wouldn't really be that much fun to just transcribe people on the radio who speak different dialects of English than I do, plus I'd need an extra several dozen blogs for that. I also didn't think I've said anywhere that she should talk any differently. Civil libertarian though, really? Again, I don't think describing things violates anyone's civil liberties, and I might mention that I delete the comments I receive on here that state she should be fired, make analogies between her and various lower-class and poorly educated folks, and so forth. Again, it's just description, and I think it says more about the people who are choosing to take it various ways than it does about me simply posting the descriptions.