I’ve been speaking to a few people about language, someone even told me he had a few of his own theories;) and with any luck, I will be able to get them on camera. In the meantime, I’ve found quite a few similarities between the way Australians view English and the way Americans view English.
First off, just as there is a Mainstream American English (MAE) there is also a Mainstream Australian English (MAE; I added the Mainstream part). And even though these Englishes are different, what’s interesting is that it seems to be acceptable and even “cool” to understand that Australians speak a different English than Americans or that British speak a different English than Australians. BUT the key point here is that it’s the mainstream culture of English that is being compared.
Even in this video that I found, it’s great that people notice these differences in English BETWEEN countries and nationalities, but we still seem to be missing the legitimacy of speaking different Englishes across cultures, races, and class WITHIN a country.
Alright, so, I enjoyed learning the vocabulary differences used in Australia, but notice the man in the video is White, more than likely middle-class, and male; part of the mainstream society of his Australian nation. So, while comparing mainstream to mainstream is fine, I would really like to learn about the differences between the English of mainstream Australians versus the English of the multitude of Indigenous Australians. Because, let’s be honest, it is these differences that matter when we talk about things like education, equality, and social justice.