||This article needs additional citations for verification. (February 2011)|
Cajun English is the dialect of English spoken by Cajuns living in southern Louisiana and, to some extent, in eastern Texas. Cajun English is significantly influenced by Cajun French, the historical language of the Cajun people, a direct descendant of Acadian French, which differs extensively from Metropolian or Parisian French in terms of pronunciation and vocabulary, particularly because of the long isolation of Acadians, and even more so Cajuns, from the Francophone world. English is now spoken by the vast majority of the Cajun population, but French influence remains strong in terms of inflection and vocabulary, and the accent is quite distinct from the General American.1
While Cajun French is considered by many to be an endangered language, mostly used by elderly generations, Cajun English is spoken by even the youngest Cajuns, and is considered to be part of the identity of the ethnic group.
Cajun English distinguishes itself with some of the following features:
- Many vowels which are separate in General American English are pronounced the same way, for example, the words hill and heel are homophones, both being pronounced /hɪɹl/citation needed.
- Stress is generally placed on the second or last syllable of a word, a feature directly inherited from French.
- The voiceless and voiced alveolar stops /t/ and /d/ often replace dental fricatives, a feature used by both Cajun English speakers and speakers of Louisiana Creole French (Standard French speakers generally render dental fricatives as alveolar). Examples include "bath" being pronounced as "bat" and "they" as "day."
- Cajun English speakers generally do not aspirate the consonants /p/, /t/, or /k/. As a result, the words "par" and "bar" can sound very similarby whom?.
- The inclusion of many loanwords, calques, and phrases from French, such as "nonc" (uncle, from the French oncle), "cher" (dear, pronounced /ʃæ/, from the French cher), and "making groceries" (to shop for groceries, a calque of the Cajun French faire des groceries (épicerie))
These are a few other examples.
|English||Cajun English (pronounced)|
|Think||Fink or Tink|
Dress: [ɛ] or [æ]
Square: [ɛ] or [æ]
Start: [ɑ] or [a]
North: [ɔə] or.[ɔɹ]
Force: [ɔə] or [ɔɹ]
Cure: [uə] or [ʊə]
Nurse: [ʌə] or [ʌɹ]
Price/Prize: [ɑɪ] or [a:]
Mouth:[aʊ] or [a:]
happY: [ɪ] or [i]
Mirror/Nearer: [i] or [ɪ]
Orange: [ɑ] or [ɔ]
- Allon! : Let's go!
- Alors pas : Of course not
- Fais do-do : To go to sleep, refers to a dance party.
- Dis-moi la vérité ! : Tell me the truth!
- Quoi faire ? : Why?
- Un magasin : A store
- Être en colère : To be angry
- Mo chagren : I’m sorry
- Une sucette : A pacifier
- Une piastre : A dollar
- Un caleçon : Boxers
- Sha/cher (a is pronounced like a in apple, from) : Dear or darling - also used as "buddy" or "pal"
- Mais non, cher ! : Of course not, dear!
There are several phrases used by Cajuns that are completely unknown to non-Cajun speakers. When outside of Acadiana, Cajuns tend to be made fun of for using these phrases. Young Cajuns are often jokingly discouraged from marrying non-Cajuns for this simple fact. The two most common are listed below:
To "save the dishes" means to "put away the dishes into cupboards where they belong after being washed". While dishes are the most common subject, it is not uncommon to save other things. For example: Save up the clothes, saving the tools, save your toys.
"Getting down at the store" involves stepping out of a car to enter the store. Most commonly, the driver will ask the passenger, "Do you want to get down with me?" One can get down at any place, not just the store. This phrase may come from the act of "getting down off of a horse" as many areas of Acadiana were only accessible by horse (or boat) well into the 20th century. It also may originate from the French language descendre meaning to get down, much as some English-Spanish bilingual speakers say "get down," from the Spanish bajar.
- In the Walt Disney film The Princess and the Frog, the character of the firefly Raymond (or Ray) presented himself to be born and raised in the Bayou and therefore a true-blooded Cajun.
- In the movie The Green Mile based on a book by Stephen King and starring Tom Hanks, a character named Eduard Delacroix is a Cajun prisoner who keeps a pet mouse. In the movie he often resorts to speaking his native Cajun French dialect, which is discouraged by the prison guards.
- In the television series True Blood, the character René Lernier was introduced as a Cajun. However, later in the series, it was learned that he only perfected the accent through the help of some instructional materials.
- In Supernatural, the character Benny Lafitte is a Cajun vampire that befriends Dean Winchester in the eighth season.
- In X-Men : The Animated Series, the character Gambit was introduced as from Louisiana and is known to speak in a thick Cajun accent.
- In the television series Luck, the character Leon Micheaux is a Cajun jockey.
- In the television miniseries Band of Brothers the company's medic Eugene Roe is half-Cajun and speaks with a distinct accent.
- Likewise, Merriell "Snafu" Shelton from a companion miniseries The Pacific.
Several characters of Gabriel Knight: Sins of the Fathers, particularly the narrator, have Cajun accents. Some characters even use Cajun French phrases.
- A HANDBOOK OF VARIETIES OF ENGLISH
- Acadia, former home of the Cajuns, located in what is now eastern Canada
- Acadiana, A 22-parish region in southern Louisiana
- Acadian French, the dialect of French from which Cajun French derives
- American English
- Cajun French
- Dialects of the English Language
- Franglais, a term sometimes used to describe a mixed vernacular of French and English
- Louisiana Creole French, a French-based creole which has had some influence on Cajun French and English
- Yat, another Louisiana dialect of English
Content from Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia
What Is This Site? The Ultimate Study Guide is a mirror of English Wikipedia. It exists in order to provide Wikipedia content to those who are unable to access the main Wikipedia site due to draconian government, employer, or school restrictions. The site displays all the text content from Wikipedia. Our sponsors generously cover part of the cost of hosting this site, and their ads are shown as part of this agreement. We regret that we are unable to display certain controversial images on some pages the site at the request of the sponsors. If you need to see images which we are unable to show, we encourage you to view Wikipedia directly if possible, and apologize for this inconvenience.
A product of XPR Content Systems. 47 Union St #9K, Grand Falls-Windsor NL A2A 2C9 CANADA