Chicano English-Language Defining a Culture
There is no concrete definition when describing Chicano English. “Linguists are still continuing to investigate the features of Chicano English in order to establish one that is more inclusive than those of the past” (Duchnowski). Carmen Fought defines it as an imprecise term for a nonstandard variety of the English language influenced by the Spanish language and spoken as a native dialect by both bilingual and monolingual speakers. It is very often misunderstood; many people mistake Chicano English as “broken English” or refer to it as “Spanglish.” And the distinct and special phonology, syntax, stress patterns, and vowel and consonant variations that make up the Chicano English dialect.
Speaking Chicano English does not mean or identify as limited proficiency in English. The general public often views the language as “broken English” and categorizes the people that speak it as uneducated. Originally people thought that Chicano English wasn’t even a separate dialect of English. They thought that they were just making “mistakes” when they spoke because Spanish was their first language. But Chicano English is its own dialect. Actually most Chicano speakers are usually native speakers of English and may speak little or no Spanish (“Talking With Mi Gente”). Chicano English is a distinctive U.S. English dialect. Chicano English has also been referred to by some people as “Spanglish,” and some people also see the word “Spanglish” as positive or negative. Spanglish is a term used for code-switching, which is “the more complex mixing of lexical items and structures from English and Spanish in a single sentence,” (“Talking With Mi Gente”) this is not the same thing as Chicano English. Speakers of Chicano English can mix in Spanish words, but for those that speak Chicano English and don’t know any Spanish, just English, are most likely not going to mix in Spanish words when they’re talking.
One of the factors that make...