This week we received an interesting and fun book about the way we talk across this country. - Speaking American: How Ya’ll, Youse and You Guys Talk: A Visual Guide by Josh Katz. This book uses maps and statistics to show the various ways people from different parts of the United States say things.
The author created an interactive dialect quiz in the New York Times back in 2013 that became the most viewed page in the paper’s history. He used this overwhelming response to make this book. He shows how the way we say certain words or the terms we use can reveal where we grew up. He also explains the history and cultural factors that behind the way things are said in different areas.
Some fun examples include: Is it a garage sale, yard sale, rummage sale or tag sale?, Do you drink pop, soda or Coke?, Is the sandwich a sub, hoagie or hero? (interestingly the local “po-boy” is not listed)
If you have noticed the different ways people talk and wondered about those differences, you should definitely take a look at this book. It can be found in the non-fiction section of the library in Dewey number 427.