Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Ning, nang, nong

Another day and another article about teen slang, delivered this time from the perspective of trying to translate this bizarre alien language into Standard English for a middle class audience. In The Times yesterday, Michele Kirsch talks about the "scary bitches" on the back seats of the bus, the "nang", "buff" and "grimy" slang terms being chucked around by them and then makes some vaguely patronising comments about mixed race girls before retiring to her Hamsptead home to share her gritty, urban experience with her chums over a nice glass of Chablis.

This time round, much of the slang identified is fairly accurately noted - she talked to some real teenagers as part of the article's research - but it's the representation of the users of slang that might be more interesting to consider from an A Level English Language perspective. Is it just me, or is she treating these teenagers as exotic beasts that she barely understands? Have a read for yourself and see what you think...

Useful for:
ENA5 - Language Change & Varieties
ENA6 - Language Debates

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