Black English is not exactly a "linguistic buffalo," for as children, most of the 35 million Afro-Americans living in the United States depend on this language for their discovery of the world (Jordan 363). What is commonly called English, less and less defers to England, and is no longer a specific matter of geography or an element of class privilege. More than 33 countries use this language as a means of intra-national communication. Countries as disparate as Zimbabwe and Malaysia, or Israel and Uganda, use it as their non-native currency of convenience. Obviously, this tool cannot function inside these countries on the basis of rules and values absolutely determined somewhere else--such as the United States or Britain.
In addition, there are five countries, or 333,746,000 people, for whom English serves as a native tongue (Jordan 364). Approximately 10-12 percent of these native speakers are Afro-American. Obviously, numerous forms of English now operate inside a natural continuum of development. For example, it can be supposed that the Standard English in Malaysia is not the same as the Standard English in Zimbabwe. Certainly, the standard forms of English for black people in the United States do not copy that of caucasians. In fact, the structural differences between these two kinds of English have intensified, becoming more "black" or less "white," despite the expected homogenizing effects of television and other mass media (Jordan 364).
Nonetheless, white standards of English persist in the United States. In contrast to a country such as Nicaragua, where all citizens are legally entitled to formal school instruction in their regional or tribal languages, compulsory education in the United States compels accommodation to exclusively "white" forms of English, better known as Standard English.
By the beginning of the seventeenth century, African slaves in America used Pidgin English--or Black English--so tha...