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Minnick book named ALA Outstanding Academic Title

Jan. 22, 2006

KALAMAZOO--"Dialect and Dichotomy" by Dr. Lisa Minnick, a member of the English faculty at Western Michigan University, has been selected as an Outstanding Academic Title by Choice magazine of the American Library Association.

Out of more than 23,000 academic works published annually and the nearly 7,000 reviewed by the editorial staff of Choice each year, fewer than 700 are selected to the Outstanding Academic Title list. "Dialect and Dichotomy" is among 682 books and electronic resources selected to the 2006 list, which was published in the January issue of Choice.

Minnick's "Dialect and Dichotomy" is "an important and highly original study," according to Choice, which is a publication of the Association of College and Research Libraries, a division of the American Library Association. More than 35,000 academic librarians, faculty and key decision makers in American higher education use Choice magazine and ChoiceReviews.online for scholarly research, selection of course materials and development of library collections.

In "Dialect and Dichotomy," Minnick offers a new view of dialect writing and its relationship to literary, linguistic, and political and cultural trends, with particular emphasis placed on African American voices in literature.

"Dialect and Dichotomy" covers recent, innovative applications of linguistic analysis of literature. It proposes theoretical principles and specific methods that can be implemented to analyze literary dialect for linguistic or literary purposes, or both. The proposed methods are applied in four original analyses of African American speech as represented in major works of fiction of the American South, including Mark Twain's "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn," Charles W. Chesnutt's "The Conjure Woman," William Faulkner's "The Sound and the Fury" and Zora Neale Hurston's "Their Eyes Were Watching God."

Minnick joined the WMU faculty in 2004 as an assistant professor of English. She has contributed to the African American and Gullah data digitization project for the Linguistic Atlas of the Middle and South Atlantic States at the University of Georgia. She received a bachelor's degree from the University of Florida and her master's and doctoral degrees in English language and American literature from the University of Georgia.

"Dialect and Dichotomy" was originally published in August 2004 by the University of Alabama Press and is available through barnesandnoble.com and other major bookstores.

Media contact: Thom Myers, (269) 387-8400, thom.myers@wmich.edu

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