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College of Arts & Sciences
Linguistics Program

Faculty & Staff Directory

Tracey L. Weldon

Associate Professor (English), Associate Dean for Diversity and Inclusion
University of South Carolina

Office: Humanities Office Building 215
Website: Click here


Ph.D., Linguistics, Ohio State University

Research Interests

I am a quantitative sociolinguist, specializing in varieties of American English, with a particular focus on African American English (AAE) and Gullah. My current book project, under contract with Cambridge University Press, examines the use of AAE by middle class speakers.            

Teaching Interests  

I teach graduate and undergraduate classes in Sociolinguistics and General Linguistics. 

Undergraduate courses taught: The English Language, Language and Gender, African-American English, Language in the USA

Graduate courses taught: Survey of Linguistics, Introduction to Sociolinguistics, Varieties of American English, Seminar in Language Variation, Seminar on African American English (Special Topics)

Recent Publications

2015. Britt, Erica and Tracey Weldon. African American English in the Middle class. Oxford Handbook of African American language. New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press. 800-816.

2015. Weldon, Tracey and Simanique Moody. The place of Gullah in the African American linguistic continuum. Oxford Handbook of African American language. New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press. 163-180.

2013, Vignette on "Working with scripted data." in Data collection in sociolinguistics: Methods and applications. Christine Mallinson, Becky Chids, and Gerarad Van Herk, eds. New York: Routledge. 228-231.

2012. “Teaching African American English to College Students: Ideological and Pedagogical Challenges and Solutions.” American Speech 87: 2. 232-247

2011. Labov, William, Sharon Ash, Maya Ravindranath, Tracey Weldon, Maciej Baranowski, Naomi Nagy. Properties of the sociolinguistic monitor. Journal of sociolinguistics 15: 4. 431-463.

2007. Gullah negation: A variable analysis. American speech. 82: 4. 341-366.

2005. Gullah Gullah islands. American Voices: How dialects differ from coast to coast. Walt Wolfram and Ben Ward, eds. Malden and Oxford: Blackwell. 178-182. (Reprint of Weldon, 2002. Gullah Gullah Islands. Language Magazine. February edition. 31, 33-34). 

2005. Review article on The development of African American English, by Walt Wolfram and Erik Thomas, Oxford and Malden: Blackwell, 2002; and The historical evolution of earlier African American English: An empirical comparison of early sources, by Alexander Kautzsch, Berlin and New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 2002. Language 81.2. 478-494.

2004. Gullah: Phonology. A handbook of varieties of English 1: 2. Berlin and New York: Mouton de Gruyter. 393-406.

2003. Copula variability in Gullah. Language variation and change 15: 1. 37-72.

2003. Revisiting the Creolist Hypothesis: Copula variability in Gullah and Southern rural AAVE. American speech 78: 2. 171-191.

2002. Gullah Gullah islands. Language magazine. February edition. 31, 33-34.

2000. Reflections on the Ebonics controversy. American speech (Diamond Anniversary Edition): 75: 3. 275-277.

2000. Haller, Cynthia R., Victoria J. Gallagher, Tracey L. Weldon, Richard M. Felder. Dynamics of peer education in cooperative learning workgroups. Journal of engineering education 89: 3. 285-293.

1994. Variability in negation in African-American Vernacular English. Language variation and change 6: 3. 359-397.

Recent Presentations

2016. "Race, class and camouflaged divergence: The case of BEEN and read." American Dialect Society (ADS). Washington, D.C

2015. "African American English in the undergraduate linguistics classroom." Keynote speaker. Linguistics Workshop. The University of Wisconsin, LaCrosse.

2015. "Race, class, and camouflaged divergence." North Carolina State University Brown Bag presentation. Raleigh, N.C.

2015. "Sounding Black: Labeling and perceptions of African American voices on southern college campuses." Lead presenter for "Talking Black in the South" panel. Language Variety in the South (LAVIS IV).

2014. "The Place of Gullah in the African American Language Continuum: Historical and contemporary Perspectives." Presentation for "Out of the rice fields: Vestiges of Gullah Culture in Modern Society" series, organized by Georgetown Counry Library. September, 2014.

2014. "Talking White, talking Black: Exploring the links between language, class and racial identity." Presentation for First-year reading experience speaker series, USC Upstate. October, 2014

2013. “From Babs to Biggie: Middle Class African American English and intraspeaker variation.” YOLO: 21st Century Mix-Tape panel presentation. 5th International Conference on the Linguistics of Contemporary English (ICLCE 5). University of Texas at Austin.

2013. “Confessions of a code-switcher: An auto-ethnographic account of Middle Class African American English.” African American Studies Spring Symposium. University of Texas at San Antonio.

2013. “New directions in African American English research: Pointing the compass toward the middle class.” Plenary for the Southeastern conference on linguistics (SECOL). The University of South Carolina, Upstate.

2013. “Dialect diversity in the classroom: A focus on African American English.” Guest lecture. Francis Marion University, School of Education.

2012. “Redefining the ‘Authentic’ AAE speaker: An examination of Middle Class African American English.” English Department Morrison Fellowship Lecture  and Linguistics Program Colloquium Presentation, The University of South Carolina.

2012. “Middle Class African American English – Not So Lame.” Symposium presentation for "Rethinking the Black American Speaking Subject in Contemporary Studies of Language and Culture." The University of California, Santa Barbara.

2012. “African American English in the classroom: Building bridges between linguistics and education.” Keynote address and workshop. South Carolina Council for African American Studies Conference. Columbia, SC.

2011. “Middle Class African American Language: A Self-Study.” New Ways of Analyzing Variation (NWAV), Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.

2010. “Bougie banter: Representations of Middle Class AAE in film.” American Dialect Society (ads) Conference. Baltimore, Maryland.

Recent Grants/Awards

2015-2016. Pipeline for Academic Leadears (PAL) Fellow. The University of South Carolina.

2013-2016. Research collaborator and advisory board member, “Talking Black in America: A Documentary and Outreach Program”. National Science Foundation (NSF), Informal Science Education (ISE), Connecting Researchers and Public Audiences (CRPA). Principal Investigator: Dr. Walt Wolfram (North Carolina State University).

2014. Contributing scholar. ”Out of the Rice Fields: Vestiges of Gullah Culture in Modern Society”. The SC Humanities Council. Principal Investigator: Dr. Valinda Littlefield (The University of South Carolina).

2011-2013. Provost Humanities Grant. The University of South Carolina

2011-2012. Associate Professor Development Award. The College of Arts and Sciences. USC 

2011. Project Mentor. Magellan Scholar Program Award. For Lauren Fowler’s honor’s thesis on “Pre-service teachers’ attitudes toward dialect diversity in the classroom”. USC

2010-2011. Morrison Fellowship. English Department. USC