Multicultural London English

Multicultural LondonJafaicanblack accentBlack BritishEnglish with borrowed expressionshybrid accentIn the United KingdomLondon EnglishmultiethnicSouth London accents
Multicultural London English (abbreviated MLE) is a sociolect of English that emerged in the late twentieth century.wikipedia
64 Related Articles

Multiethnolect

As a result, it can be regarded as a multiethnolect.
Wiese (2006) uses the term German Kiezdeutsch, meaning ‘neighbourhood German’, to refer to multiethnic youth language in Germany.

Tag question

tag questionsquestion tagtag-question
* Innit, a reduction of 'isn't it', has a third discourse function in MLE, in addition to the widespread usage as a tag-question or a follow-up as in [1] and [2] below.
As an all-purpose tag the Multicultural London English set-phrase innit (for "isn't it") is only used with falling patterns:

Cockney

cockney accentCockney EnglishCockney dialect
While older speakers in London display a vowel and consonant system that matches earlier descriptions, young speakers often display different qualities.
In London's East End, some traditional features of cockney have been displaced by a Jamaican Creole-influenced variety popular among young Londoners (sometimes referred to as "Jafaican"), particularly, though far from exclusively, those of Afro-Caribbean descent.

London slang

21st century London slang
London slang
Cockney rhyming slang and Multicultural London English are the best known forms of London slang.

Attack the Block

Danielle
The gang protagonists of the film Attack the Block speak Multicultural London English.
US distributors were concerned that American audiences might not understand the strong South London accents, and may have even used subtitles if it were to be released in the United States.

Working class

working-classlower classworkers
It is spoken authentically by working-class, mainly young, people in London (although there is evidence to suggest that certain features are spreading further afield ).

London Borough of Lambeth

LambethBorough of LambethLambeth Council
As the label suggests, speakers of MLE come from a wide variety of ethnic and cultural backgrounds, and live in diverse inner-city neighbourhoods such as Brent, Lambeth and Hackney.

London Borough of Hackney

HackneyHackney, LondonHackney, East London
As the label suggests, speakers of MLE come from a wide variety of ethnic and cultural backgrounds, and live in diverse inner-city neighbourhoods such as Brent, Lambeth and Hackney.

Language contact

contact languagecontactcontact linguistics
Two Economic and Social Research Council funded research projects found that MLE has most likely developed as a result of language contact and group second language acquisition.

Interlanguage

interim languagelearners' varietieslearners’ varieties
Specifically, it can contain elements from "learners' varieties of English, Englishes from the Indian subcontinent and Africa, Caribbean creoles and Englishes along with their indigenised London versions (Sebba 1993), local London and south-eastern vernacular varieties of English, local and international youth slang, as well as more levelled and standard-like varieties from various sources."

Creole language

creolecreolescreole languages
Specifically, it can contain elements from "learners' varieties of English, Englishes from the Indian subcontinent and Africa, Caribbean creoles and Englishes along with their indigenised London versions (Sebba 1993), local London and south-eastern vernacular varieties of English, local and international youth slang, as well as more levelled and standard-like varieties from various sources."

Regular and irregular verbs

irregular verbirregular verbsirregular
Was/were variation: The past tense of the verb "to be" is regularised. Regularisation of was/were is something that is found across the English speaking world. Many non-standard systems in Britain (and parts of the US Mid-Atlantic coast) use was variably for positive conjugations, and weren't for negative conjugations (System 1 below) to make the distinction between positive and negative contexts clearer (cf. will/won't and are/ain't). Most non-Standard varieties in the English speaking world have a system where both positive and negative contexts have levelled to was (System 2 below). Speakers of MLE use any of the three systems, with choice correlating with ethnicity and gender. Cheshire and Fox (2008) found the use of non-standard was to be most common among Black Caribbean speakers, and least common among those of Bangladeshi descent. Bangladeshis were also found to use non-standard weren't the least, but this variable was used more by White British speakers than anyone else.

Dialect levelling in Britain

Dialect Levellinglevelled
The qualities are on the whole not the levelled ones noted in recent studies (such as Williams & Kerswill 1999 and Przedlacka 2002) of teenage speakers in South East England outside London: Milton Keynes, Reading, Luton, Essex, Slough and Ashford.

South East England

South EastSouth East of Englandsouth-east England
The qualities are on the whole not the levelled ones noted in recent studies (such as Williams & Kerswill 1999 and Przedlacka 2002) of teenage speakers in South East England outside London: Milton Keynes, Reading, Luton, Essex, Slough and Ashford.

Milton Keynes

Milton Keynes, England. Milton Keynes1967 design
The qualities are on the whole not the levelled ones noted in recent studies (such as Williams & Kerswill 1999 and Przedlacka 2002) of teenage speakers in South East England outside London: Milton Keynes, Reading, Luton, Essex, Slough and Ashford.

Essex

County of EssexEssex CountyEssex, England
The qualities are on the whole not the levelled ones noted in recent studies (such as Williams & Kerswill 1999 and Przedlacka 2002) of teenage speakers in South East England outside London: Milton Keynes, Reading, Luton, Essex, Slough and Ashford.

Slough

borough of SloughPriory SchoolSlough UA, United Kingdom
The qualities are on the whole not the levelled ones noted in recent studies (such as Williams & Kerswill 1999 and Przedlacka 2002) of teenage speakers in South East England outside London: Milton Keynes, Reading, Luton, Essex, Slough and Ashford.

Outer London

Outer London - East and North EastLondon suburbsouter suburbs of London
Lack of -fronting: fronting of the offset of "absent in most inner-London speakers" of both sexes and all ethnicities but "present in outer-city girls".

Diphthong

diphthongsfalling diphthongrising diphthong
-lowering across region: it is seen as a reversal of the diphthong shift. However, the added fronting is greater in London than in the southeastern periphery, resulting in variants such as . Fronting and monophthongisation of are correlated with ethnicity and strongest among non-whites. It seems to be a geographically directional and diachronically gradual process. The change (from approximately ) involves lowering of the onset, and as such, it is a reversal of the diphthong shift. It can be interpreted as a London innovation with diffusion to the periphery.

Fronting

Advanced fronting of results in realisations such as

H-dropping

h''-droppingdroppedh-adding
Reversal of H-dropping: word-initial /h/ was commonly dropped in traditional Cockney in words like hair and hand. That is now much less common, with some MLE speakers not dropping /h/ at all.

Th-stopping

th''-stoppingstoppedstopping
Th-stopping: interdental fricatives can be stopped, and thing and that become ting and dat.

Geoff Lindsey

According to Geoff Lindsey, one of the most striking features of MLE is the advanced articulation of the sibilants as post-dental.

Paganism

paganpagansheathen
"Paigon" (A modified spelling of English word "pagan", to refer to a fake friend/enemy)

West Country English

West CountryWest Country accentDorset dialect
"Aks" (ask, an example of metathesis that also occurs in West Country dialects)