Current Trends of Dialect Preservation Through Musical Performance in the Pennsylvania German Community of Southeastern Pennsylvania
Yadush, Chantel Lynn
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The purpose of this thesis is to examine who the Pennsylvania Dutch people are in light of American immigration history, interviews with Pennsylvania Dutch community leaders and scholars, performance observations, and printed text resources in order to evaluate how members of the Pennsylvania German community are actively promoting and preserving the Pennsylvania German dialect through the medium of performance. There is a general consensus among people familiar with the Pennsylvania Dutch culture that the Pennsylvania Dutch language is disappearing. Within the past 100 years cultural centers and educational institutions have been established to encourage and support preservation of the Pennsylvania Dutch language in Southeastern Pennsylvania. This study explores how and why musical performances within the community are fueled by a revivalist mentality to preserve the Pennsylvania Dutch language.