Megan Weaver

Owning Our Appalachian English: A Stephenson Center for Appalachia lecture

Do you ever wonder if it’s “App-a-latch-a" or "App-a-lay-cha"? How about “buggy” or “shopping cart”?

On Thursday, Oct. 17 the Stephenson Center for Appalachia will host High Country native and former Lees-McRae professor of English Megan Weaver for her talk titled, “Owning Our Appalachian English.”

Starting at 7 p.m. in Evans Auditorium, Weaver will answer your burning questions and stimulate discussion of our mountain dialects.

In this presentation, Weaver, whose ancestors settled and founded Weaverville in Buncombe County, will discuss the Scotch-Irish origins of the language variety, debunking the myth that Appalachians speak “Elizabethan English.” Additionally, Weaver will discuss popular stigmatized features of the dialect and their role in cultivating an Appalachian identity.

As part of this interactive program, attendees will be invited to share their perceptions of and/or experiences as speakers of Appalachian English, and will call upon their inner-linguist to participate in an analysis of the Appalachian English feature, a-prefixing.

Weaver is a doctoral candidate at Old Dominion University and an instructor of composition at Virginia Tech University. Her research, which has been published in Linguistics and Education and presented at various national conferences, upholds linguistic diversity by examining the development of students’ and teachers’ critical language awareness in writing program spaces.

“We are delighted to bring Megan Weaver back to campus to share her expertise with us once again,” Michael Joslin, director of the Stephenson Center for Appalachia, said. “Her knowledge and understanding of the roots and varieties of mountain speech are important contributions to Appalachia.”

Stephenson Center programs are free and open to the public. For more information contact Michael Joslin at

By Nina MastandreaOctober 09, 2019
CommunityCampus LifeAcademics