View Poll Results: I prefer to speak:

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  • my standard national language

    14 34.15%
  • my dialect

    26 63.41%
  • no preference

    1 2.44%
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Thread: Standard Language Versus Dialect, Which Do You Prefer?

  1. #1
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    Standard Language Versus Dialect, Which Do You Prefer?

    There used to be a heated debate in the German section about this.
    For those who have dialects in their language, what do you prefer to speak, standard vs. dialect? Why?

  2. #2
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    I prefer dialects, or regional variations in the case of my maternal language. Just because they reflect something more specific, unlike the standard language that I find to be more plain. However, in my maternal language is more about the accent and some regional terms, but still, in Norwegian, for example, I think dialects are pretty nice...

    It's annoying, of course, when you want to learn a language that has many dialects, and you start with the standard language, while people around you speak in dialect... but I am for preserving the local specifics, so I think it's fine how is it...
    Die Farben duften frisch und grün... Lieblich haucht der Wind um mich.

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    In the U.S. you could say we have our own dialect of English, plus various sub dialects around the country. Say for example someone from New England may have trouble understanding someone from the deep South.

    I like the idea of dialects as it lets you know where someone comes from. Just because it is one country I really like the idea of regionalism.
    Life is like a fire hydrant- sometimes you help people put out their fires, but most of the time you just get peed on by every dog in the neighborhood.

  4. #4
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    I speak pretty much purely standardized Norwegian, with a couple of "odd words" and slightly different pronounciations here and there. Still, someone from the West coast f.ex., would probably not notice any difference from my speech and the speech of someone grown up in Oslo.

    I greatly envy those who have their distinct regional dialect. Particulary since there's so many dialects in Norway that are so much more beautiful than the standardized tongue.

    Also, speaking your own regional dialect promotes diversity, unlike promoting the standardized tongue as the rule, which (allthough makes people understand eachother more easily) makes the language poorer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Víđálfr View Post
    However, in my maternal language is more about the accent and some regional terms,
    It's basically the same for Afrikaans as spoken by Afrikaners, so I'm withholding my vote as I wouldn't really know. There's one other provincial accent in South Africa I find quite distinct, and I'm reluctant to even call the few German words adopted by Afrikaners in Namibia regional terms. They speak close enough to Standard Afrikaans as I do.

    As for the preservation/promotion of a standard dialect over another or the other way around, I'm unsure which to think preferable. This thread about some of Denmark's dialects supposedly dying out touched on a few interesting points, such as that the standard dialect is the one most susceptible to foreign influence in the long term since that's the one learned and used by immigrants, and that other dialects are therefor a safer bet for linguistic preservation.

    However, I wouldn't speak well of the over-promotion of a dialect. Afrikaans was once a dialect of Dutch as well, and through mostly a lack of education it was aggrandized to a separate language. Though I love my mother tongue and think it a brilliant language, there are definitely disadvantages to not retaining Dutch as our cultural language, which we're suffering even now. That's the short of it. Had I lived in earlier times and thought as I did now, I think would have advocated Dutch over Afrikaans. That's just considering cultural survivability above regionalism.

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    I speak the West Texas sub-dialect of Appalachian/Southern Highland speech.

    I wish yall could hear my grandparents...they still say things that directly come from the old-time Northumbrian dialect of their ancestors. Listening to them is a flat-out archaic experience

    I love our accent/dialect, and I love when women speak it fluently.

    I think dialects are a great thing! People who speak a local dialect are usually much more traditionalistic and probably raised in a rural environment.......which is like an incubator for Germanic preservation.

  7. #7
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    I see nothing wrong with my regional dialect; no reason to convert to a national default.
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  8. #8
    I prefer to speak my own dialect (although it's recognized as a regional language) because it is simply my first language. Of course I speak Dutch fluently but it remains my second language. When speaking Limburgian I can express myself much better. It is also very hard to speak Dutch to for example my parents. That's almost like speaking English to them; it's just not our own language. Some years ago my father asked me to talk Dutch to him, because people from the north of the Netherlands were in our company and it would be rude to speak Limburgian since they couldn't understand. As soon as I started talking Dutch to him I started to stutter tremendously.
    Well, talking "plat" is just a part of the regional identity here, so giving it up would be unthinkable. This doesn't mean that I don't care for our standard Dutch language. Although created as a simple tool of communication for people who spoke different dialects at the beginning, now it has become an important aspect of our culture and it should remain that way. Still local and regional identities are very important in my view, because it connects people with their direct environment in stead of something far away. This in no way destroys our national identity though, I think it can even enhance it. The multiple identities are like regional and local representations of our national identity. Limburgian regionalism can even function as a good argument for the Dietse gedachte, the idea of a greater Netherlands, since Limburg has been split between Flanders and the Netherlands. It's like a regional symbol for a national unity.

  9. #9
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    The Oslo dialect is in itself a regional dialect, so it's not "standardized" is it? Standardized dialects are usually just spoken on news programmes, like "BBC English" etc. Dialect of capital =/= Standardized dialect.

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    I am an old proponent of dialects to be tended to. There are several reasons for me preferring dialects, but the main two are the regional/cultural issue, and the linguistic issue:

    1. I believe that our folk, as a nation, can only be strong if its regions are strong. If things aren't fine in your family, they won't be fine in your life. We must fix the local issues before we can fix the national issues. Likewise, if we can't even preserve our foremost regional practices and pecularities, then how can we even hope to preserve nationwide practices and pecularities?

    2. As a budding linguist, a language rich in dialects, is a true treasure trove. As a general rule, dialect tends to either retain certain archaic features, or it may be the only to introduce certain new features which can sometimes make their way into standard language:

    For example, High Alemannic and South Bavarian dialects are the only that fully completed the Second (High German) Consonant Shift (believed to have spread from the South)--- on the other hand, we have the i-Umlaut (which spread from the North) which made its way fully into the Standard language - whilst we have it rather inconsequentially.

    On the other hand, again, we retain the old Germanic (and actually Indo-European, as Latin and Greek retained that too for instance) -a nominative/accusative plural ending for Neutra, whilst this was essentially removed in the standard language (by analogy) by instead using the Umlaut as a plural-marking feature:

    Baum - Bauma -> Baum - Bäume BUT Bavarian Baam - Baama
    (Baum [tree] was an old neutrum before its genus was reconsidered)

    And the list could go on.

    Quote Originally Posted by Méldmir View Post
    Dialect of capital =/= Standardized dialect.
    And certainly not the case with the UK anyway. I yet have to see a BBC reporter ramble on in Cockney. (And I am using Cockney rather than a different term on purpose, because the actual capital, the City of London is all within a mile of that famous bell )
    -In kalte Schatten versunken... /Germaniens Volk erstarrt / Gefroren von Lügen / In denen die Welt verharrt-
    -Die alte Seele trauernd und verlassen / Verblassend in einer erklärbaren Welt / Schwebend in einem Dunst der Wehmut / Ein Schrei der nur unmerklich gellt-
    -Auch ich verspüre Demut / Vor dem alten Geiste der Ahnen / Wird es mir vergönnt sein / Gen Walhalla aufzufahren?-

    (Heimdalls Wacht, In kalte Schatten versunken, stanzas 4-6)

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