Welcome to the new Wisconsin Englishes Project website!

We’re in the middle of a long overdue overhaul, including regular updates in the future. We’re launching while we’re still updating … we just couldn’t stand to wait any longer. In fact, if you poke around the site, you’ll probably see some sections that are, as they used to say about websites, ‘under construction’.

Check out our new featured articles, just to the right here and the list of articles to come soon. We have a lot lined up but would welcome ideas for issues about English or other languages in Wisconsin and the Upper Midwest. If you have a question about language and dialect in Wisconsin, ask away … it could become a featured article.

We’re now on Twitter and FB, and will be announcing updates and telling you about other relevant news.

The heavy lifting on this redesign is being done by Cris Font-Santiago and Sarah Holmstrom, both doctoral students here at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Thanks, Cris and Sarah. We owe you!

Somalis in Wisconsin

by Joshua R. Brown

As a result of the devastating Somali Civil War, approximately two million Somalis sought refuge in neighboring African nations and abroad. The massive death toll to Somalis—with some estimates as high as 500,000 (White 2012)—came about due to violence and also blockades of refugee camps….

Upcoming Articles

  1. Continuity and Change in American Norwegian
         by David Natvig
  2. The Shift from Finnish to English in Northern Wisconsin
         by Mirva Johnson
  3. On the Deep Roots of German Influence in Wisconsin
         by Samantha Litty

The Wisconsin Englishes Project (WEP) is a project of the Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures (CSUMC).

The WEP began in 2006, exploring various aspects of English dialects spoken in Wisconsin, and our work has grown to include other languages spoken in Wisconsin, past and present, including the following issues:

Regional Variation

Regional differences in English across the state and the Upper Midwest—its distinct vocabulary, pronunciations, and influences, and how they change over time.

Linguistic Diversity

The languages spoken in the Upper Midwest, past and present.

Our work has been supported by the Wisconsin Humanities Council, the Ira and Ineva Reilly Baldwin Wisconsin Idea Endowment, the University of Wisconsin – Madison Graduate School, the Kemper Knapp Bequest and others.