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gracemichael
02-25-2010, 08:36 PM
This question is somewhat like the pot calling the kettle black because I have a pretty distinct Southern accent (from Kentucky!). But, do people from Mobile, Alabama area use the word 'y'all' ? I know they fall under the list of states with a Southern accent. I've traveled in the South pretty extensively, but never to Alabama. This is important for some of my dialogue.

alleycat
02-25-2010, 08:40 PM
Yes, they do.

I went to school in Auburn, Alabama.

gracemichael
02-25-2010, 08:46 PM
Thanks!!

Dawnny Baby
02-25-2010, 09:31 PM
When I lived in Texas, my boss at one of my jobs was from Mobile (mow-BEEL). He said y'all all the time.

WriteKnight
02-27-2010, 12:27 AM
"Y'all got that rat!"

Rowan
02-27-2010, 05:24 AM
Oh, that's one of my pet peeves..."ya'll"! LOL But yeah, I've run across people from Alabama at work and they do say "ya'll". :)

backslashbaby
02-27-2010, 05:32 AM
Oh, that's one of my pet peeves..."ya'll"! LOL But yeah, I've run across people from Alabama at work and they do say "ya'll". :)

You live in Virginia and y'all is your pet peeve? Uh-oh :)

mtrenteseau
02-27-2010, 07:29 AM
Oh, that's one of my pet peeves..."ya'll"! LOL But yeah, I've run across people from Alabama at work and they do say "ya'll". :)

People in Georgia say it too.

Among people who say it, two things get them really "fahrd up."

1) It's a contraction of "you all," so it's spelled y'all.
2) It's a contraction of "you all," so it's used as a second person PLURAL pronoun. No one will use the word "y'all" when referring to one person.

blacbird
02-27-2010, 07:57 AM
There is no "Southern accent". People from Georgia do not speak like people from East Texas who do not speak like people from West Texas who do not speak like people from North Lousiana who, I garontee, do not speak like people from South Louisiana, who do not speak like people from Tidewater, Virginia, who do not speak like people from Appalachian Virginia. In New Orleans alone, you can visit a half-dozen different neighborhoods where people from one do not speak like people from another. Ain't noplace else I know of that employs the term "Yats" regularly. Yeah, a lot of them routinely employ the combination "y'all". You'd do well to disavow yourself of the notion of a "Southern accent".

caw

Dawnny Baby
02-28-2010, 12:42 AM
There is no "Southern accent". People from Georgia do not speak like people from East Texas who do not speak like people from West Texas who do not speak like people from North Lousiana who, I garontee, do not speak like people from South Louisiana, who do not speak like people from Tidewater, Virginia, who do not speak like people from Appalachian Virginia. In New Orleans alone, you can visit a half-dozen different neighborhoods where people from one do not speak like people from another. Ain't noplace else I know of that employs the term "Yats" regularly. Yeah, a lot of them routinely employ the combination "y'all". You'd do well to disavow yourself of the notion of a "Southern accent".

caw
I respectfully disagree, blacbird. In my mind, to say that because there are different regional dialects there can be no distinct southern accent is akin to saying that because there are Brandywines, Beefeaters, and Cherries, they can't all be tomatoes. ;)

I'm originally from Minnesota, so when I moved to Texas, the way people pronounced words was very different from the way my ear had been used to hearing them. Yes, there was a slight difference in the length of the drawl in people from "Foht Whuth" versus people from "Awstin." And now that I'm in Kentucky there are little differences, too. And there are certainly regional colloquialisms, etc. But the way they inflect their words has enough universality in it to be a "southern accent."

People from Boston, New York, and New Jersey all have different variations on an east coast accent. Similarly, people from different parts of the United Kingdom have different accents (though I can't really tell), but they're all still classified as having a British accent.

My 2 cents worth of logic, at any rate.

Rowan
02-28-2010, 02:32 AM
You live in Virginia and y'all is your pet peeve? Uh-oh :)

Yes, in Virginia but I'm in NoVA. Most people living here are from out of state (I'm but miles from DC). :)

sassandgroove
02-28-2010, 07:36 AM
Yes we say "y'all." After one of the hurricanes- we'd been planning a trip to mobile for our anniversary and I called the hotel to see if they were open and she said, "Oh yeah, y'all come on." :)

Chris P
02-28-2010, 07:43 AM
No one will use the word "y'all" when referring to one person.

This topic has come up before, in a thread about a Stephen King novel. A handfull of people in east Mississippi do use "y'all" in the singular. It's not common, but you do hear it once in a while.

SirOtter
02-28-2010, 11:16 AM
Ya'll/y'all/yawl can be used to one person when that individual is a representative of a larger group. "Are ya'll comin' over for Sunday dinner, Preacher?" "Yup, gonna bring the younguns along, if y'all don't care." "Naw, we'd be delighted to have 'em."

There are at least thirty distinctive accents in Those States Formerly in Rebellion Against the Union. The difference is much more than pronunciation of vowels, which is why most Yankees faking one of them is so easy for us to detect. Tom Hanks needs to just frigging give up. There's a cadence peculiar to most of them collectively, but intonations and stresses vary practically from county to county.

Kitty27
02-28-2010, 04:45 PM
I am a native Georgian and I've been to Alabama,Mississippi,and Florida. The accent varies but the terms usually don't. A Virginian accent sounds very different from a New Orleans accent,which sounds almost Caribbean.

Y'all is a universal Southern word. I have never met a native Southerner who doesn't use this word.

Monkey
02-28-2010, 07:31 PM
Southern Louisiana Cajuns are almost unintelligible to the rest of the world...what's his name...Boom-something from King of the Hill (I don't have TV)...sounds a lot like a Cajun guy who lived with me for about three years.

I grew up in East Texas, but am now in South Texas. There's a big difference in accent, so much so that when I go home for the holidays I have to consciously drop the accent when I come back. I think that Blackbird is largely right; while there are some similarities in southern dialogue (and "Ya'll" seems to be one of them), the accents are varied enough that lumping them into one category doesn't really make sense. I can't really answer the question about Alabama because I've lived in Texas all my life.

And yes, we can pick out a faker from a mile away. The one that bugged me the most was Storm [edit: I meant Rogue] in the old X-men comics. Puh-leeze. She didn't sound a thing like a Cajun, and certainly not like a "southern belle", despite being called that repeatedly. And she misused "Ya'll". Just awful!

So my advice is to tell the accent rather than showing it, except in a few small word choices, such as Ya'll. Heavily accented writing can be too hard to read anyway, even for those of us who speak the dialect.

Best of luck!

DavidZahir
02-28-2010, 08:59 PM
I grew up in Escambia County, Florida (aka Baja Alabama) and heard "y'all" all the time.

Methinks rendering an accent is tricky. My personal preference is for including it in the rhythm of speech, coupled with any idiosyncracies of grammar or slang but in no way attempt to recreate the actual sound (unless you are looking for a specific effect). Shaw wrote many lower-class character dialog (especially in Major Barbara) phonetically and it is almost unintelligible.

For example(s):

Do come in.
Y'all come on in.
Please, enter.
Won't you come in?
This way.
Come.
Come on in for a visit why don't you?

StephanieFox
02-28-2010, 09:09 PM
You live in Virginia and y'all is your pet peeve? Uh-oh :)

I lived in VA and learned to say 'you all' but not 'y'all'. I still use 'you all' when speaking to groups instead of individuals. The plural you is an important part of speech.

mtrenteseau
02-28-2010, 09:51 PM
Ya'll/y'all/yawl can be used to one person when that individual is a representative of a larger group. "Are ya'll comin' over for Sunday dinner, Preacher?" "Yup, gonna bring the younguns along, if y'all don't care." "Naw, we'd be delighted to have 'em."

That's why I said referred to one person, rather than spoken to one person.

When I first moved to Georgia twenty-five years ago, it was common to hear people say "fixin' to" meaning "about to" and "mash" instead of "push" when referring to a button.

I'm sure all manner of discussion could be had about the pronunciation of "umbrella," "July," and "insurance." A pastor at a well-known church here affected a Bobby Kennedy Boston accent, but would slip when he said these words.

(I'm reminded of Jan Hooks, who replaced Delta Burke in the last season of "Designing Women." They said her audition was great, but she needed to lose the phony accent. She replied that she was using her normal speaking voice, and she was from Decatur, Georgia, which is perhaps two miles away from the alleged Druid Hills location of Suzanne Sugarbarker's house.)

sassandgroove
02-28-2010, 11:04 PM
yeah, Grace, you might search some of the older threads - I know we've had discussions in NOvels, about writing to imply an accent.

sassandgroove
02-28-2010, 11:16 PM
Some discussions about writing in accents or dialects.

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=162924&highlight=accent

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=157060&highlight=accent

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=21148&highlight=accent

http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=111838&highlight=accent I can vouch for this one, I posted in it.:)

SirOtter
02-28-2010, 11:18 PM
And yes, we can pick out a faker from a mile away. The one that bugged me the most was Storm in the old X-men comics. Puh-leeze. She didn't sound a thing like a Cajun, and certainly not like a "southern belle", despite being called that repeatedly. And she misused "Ya'll". Just awful!

I think you mean Rogue. Storm is from Africa, IIRC. And it's Gambit who's the Cajun. :)

I once met a couple from not too far apart from each other in Louisiana. His accent was very close to what most folks think of as Southern, hers was almost Brooklynese in pronunciation. Very odd, I thought.

Monkey
02-28-2010, 11:43 PM
You are so right, Sir Otter. Rogue was the one I meant. And yeah, Gambit was the one always saying, "Mon Ami," and whatnot...but having heard Cajun, I'm not sure how you could give an accurate phonetic representation.

Some of my posts have been a little loopy as of late. :D

StephanieFox
03-02-2010, 08:34 PM
I think you mean Rogue. Storm is from Africa, IIRC. And it's Gambit who's the Cajun. :)

I once met a couple from not too far apart from each other in Louisiana. His accent was very close to what most folks think of as Southern, hers was almost Brooklynese in pronunciation. Very odd, I thought.

I was born and raised in Iowa, but both my parents were from Brooklyn NY and people who hear me talk assume that I'm from somewhere in The East. I have a theory that it takes three generations to lose that accent. New Jersey accents take four generations.