Is "D'ya" in "D'ya get it?" is an African American slang?

Or it's used by all Americans? Even if everyone speaks it, which ethnicity speak this form the most?

  • In the UK we'd say D'you for Do you without thinking. I think there are two parts to your "slang" - the compression of do in spoken English and the pronounciation of you as ya in some dialects. Feb 28, 2014 at 16:45
  • Don't confuse orthography with actual speech. All Anglophones habitually use ʤə in casual speech. It's just an orthographic convention that the transcription "D'ya" is more often used to suggest "low, uneducated" speech. Plus I think that particular convention is more likely to be used by American writers, where British writers might prefer "D'you" or "D'ye" (or simply transcribe it in the normal way, and allow some other term in a character's speech to convey relaxed and/or dialectal/coarsely spoken as appropriate). Feb 28, 2014 at 21:56
  • What makes you think this is limited to Americans? Perhaps you forgot that there are hundreds of millions of English speakers all around the world? Including in, erm, England... Jul 7, 2015 at 12:33

2 Answers 2


Pronouncing "did you" as "D'ya" or "didja" is known as relaxed pronunciation and is not unique to any ethnicity in the United States. Other relaxed pronunciations are likely to be regional dialects foremost.

Additionally, keep in mind that characterizing dialect along ethnic lines is likely to be found as problematic in the present United States, depending on the forum and manner in which you do so. Due to complex historic and social issues, characterizing a certain ethnicity's dialect in a way that suggests it is less than proper English could be construed as rude or offensive. See the controversies surrounding African American Vernacular English for an idea of what you may be wading into.

  • +1 OP should be aware of these controversies, having prompted their discussion recently here. Feb 28, 2014 at 17:54

Writing this type of thing is difficult (as is defining it by country/region/ethnicity), but @starsplusplus is right. In British English "ʤə" can be the relaxed pronunciation for "Do you" (D'ya/juh) as it is a lot quicker and easier (for us) to pronounce this common sound. Equally, "dɪʤə" (Didjuh) would be its past tense equivalent. Very common in my part of England at least (the south). You may not entirely like my answer as I don't feel comfortable to comment on how Americans may approach this, but this should give you some insight for the UK/England at least.

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