How to Speak Midwestern

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Whether you are going to visit your Uncle Elmer in Fargo or watching the movie or TV show of the same name, you might wonder why people who live there sound the way they do and what some of those funny phrases mean. Edward McClelland has written a surprisingly fun to read, scholarly examination of the phenomenon of Midwestern speech. The introduction lays out the regional sections of the Midwest (North Central, Midland, Inland North) and discusses some of the distinctions found in those regions. Of course, historical immigration patterns feed into this patois, but there is more, and McClelland delves into studies and projects through the years that have examined regional speech in these areas. There are also interesting discussions about the lack of an accent — many think people from the Midwest have no accent — and whether or not that is really accurate. Perhaps the most fun part of the book is the Glossary section, which has a veritable plethora of Midwestern words and phrases that are endemic to these three regions — colorful phrases such as “uecker seats” or a “Milwaukee goiter” or “hodag” or “n’at.” The list goes on. This book is a gem.

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Author Edward McClelland
Star Count /5
Format Trade
Page Count 152 pages
Publisher Belt Publishing
Publish Date 2016-Dec-01
ISBN 9780997774276 Buy this Book
Issue June 2017
Category Reference


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