A weblog by Will Fitzgerald

Michigander dialect

From: Do You Speak American / Sea to Shining Sea / American Varieties / Midwest:

Indeed, it is not uncommon to find Michiganders who will claim that the speech of national broadcasters is modeled on their dialect. Even a cursory comparison of the speech of the network news anchors with that of the local news anchors in Detroit will reveal the fallacy of such claims.


As long as Midwesterners are viewed as average, boring or otherwise nondescript, their speech will be seen through the same prism.

Iyat least they’re tuckin’ abuut os.

Update: Here’s a nice dialect map by Labov et al. showing (among other things) the extent of the Northern Cities Shift.

Update 2: Here’s a good example (MP3) of Michigander speech, from the International Dialects of English Archive.


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