These two posters are in response to my personal views on the term "Ebonics." Intentionally placed outside of the English and Africana Studies Departments, I address the ways in which the term actually perpetuates negative stereotypes of "Black" culture rather than promoting positive identity. The term "Ebonics" (ebony + phonics) was coined in 1973 by an African- American social pyschologist, Robert Williams. He intended on giving a name to the apparently consistent dialect spoken by African Americans as a result of slave trade.
"We need to define what we speak. We need to give a clear definition to our language...We know that ebony means black and that phonics refers to speech sounds or the science of sounds. Thus, we are really talking about the science of black speech sounds or language" (Williams, 1997).
So one might ask, "If the term was created by a Black man to promote the uniqueness of Afrodiasporic culture and linguistic patterns, what's the problem?" In response to this I state, regardless of race or ethnicity, the term presents the dialect/register/language variety as a completely different language from English which only perpetuates the perception of division between white and black Americans.
The design is relatively simple -- white text on black background with the very familiar fist of the Civil Rights Movement.