Two Carson-Newman Linguistics students receive Ledford Scholarships to work on East TN Dialect Project

C-N linguistics majors Kathryn Aldridge and Whitney Sipple have received Col. Lee B. Ledford scholarships of $5,405 each from the Appalachian College Association to support full-time research in summer 2012 on local dialects of English as part of the new East Tennessee Dialect Project. Their faculty mentor, Dr. Andrea L. Menz, Assistant Professor of German and Linguistics and Director of the Interdisciplinary Linguistics Program at C-N, has created the East Tennessee Dialect Project on the model of similar projects elsewhere (e.g. the North Carolina Language and Life Project at NCSU) to document and analyze current and historical characteristics of East Tennessee dialects and to educate and advocate about issues of linguistic variation. Dr. Menz, Ms. Aldridge, and Ms. Sipple plan to spend this summer compiling a bibliography of previous research, conducting dialect fieldwork with speakers of all ages in Jefferson County and surrounding areas, analyzing linguistic structures in existing and new recordings, and developing a website to educate the public about linguistic variation in general and dialects of East Tennessee in particular.