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Do You Speak American?

Why is the English spoken by Maine lobstermen so different from the English spoken by Texas cowboys? What constitutes “standard English” in the U.S. today? Will Spanish displace English altogether? And how is English linked to issues of race, gender, and class? In this three-part series, celebrated journalist and writer Robert MacNeil travels from north to south, east to west, to answer these and other sociolinguistic questions as he studies the ongoing evolution of American English—a language rich in regional variety, strong in global impact, and steeped in cultural controversy.


Each Web-enabled disc also includes links to the PBS Web site, which reinforces and expands upon the crucial concepts and pivotal issues raised over the course of the series.


Do You Speak American?—a follow-up to MacNeil’s award-winning The Story of English—is an instant classic that merits a place in every academic library. 3-part series, 60 minutes each. All video is viewable on a DVD player, but a DVD-ROM drive is necessary to access the Web links.

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