The Encino School Board has declared Jewish English a second language. Backers of the move say the district is the first in the nation to recognize Hebonics as the language of many of America's Jews. Here are some descriptions of the characteristics of the language, and samples of phrases in standard English and Jewish English.
Samples of Pronunciation Characteristics:
Jewish English or "Hebonics" hardens consonants
at the ends of words.
The letter "W" is always pronounced as if it were a "V". Thus "walking"
"R" sounds are transformed to a guttural
utterance that is virtually
Samples of Idiomatic Characteristics:
Questions are always answered with questions:
The subject is often placed at the end of a sentence after a pronoun has been used at the beginning: "She dances beautifully, that girl."
The sarcastic repetition of words by adding "sh" to the front is used for emphasis" mountains becomes "shmountains", turtle becomes "shmurtle" Sample Usage Comparisons:
|Standard English Phrase
|"He walks slow"
"Sorry, i do not know the time"
"I hope things turn out for the best"
" Anything can happen"
|"Like a fly in the ointment he walks"
"What do I look like, a clock?"
"You should BE so lucky"
" It's never so bad, it can get worse"
|Jewish Women||Information Page|
|All Things Jewish|
|Jewish Communities of the World|