Why does the salesgirl in the supermarket talk to John in a different language in "Vengeful Creditor"?

The salesgirl in the supermarket talks to John in a different language in because, like him, she's not educated. Neither of them have taken advantage of the government's new policy of free primary education.

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The society depicted in “Vengeful Creditor ” is stratified according to education. There's a tiny educated minority at the top with just about everyone else sunk in ignorance. Although the government recently introduced a program of free primary education, it has to discontinue the policy because of its cripplingly...

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The society depicted in “Vengeful Creditor” is stratified according to education. There's a tiny educated minority at the top with just about everyone else sunk in ignorance. Although the government recently introduced a program of free primary education, it has to discontinue the policy because of its cripplingly high costs.

The educated aren't just richer and more privileged than the rest of society; they're more well-spoken. The language used by the likes of Mrs. Emenike is relatively sophisticated, certainly completely different from that used by society's uneducated, such as the people who work at the supermarket where she does her shopping.

It's notable that when the salesgirl at the supermarket is talking to Mrs. Emenike she uses the kind of English that the educated use. She's emulating the way they talk to communicate with them. But when she's talking to her uneducated co-worker John, she falls into the patois spoken by ordinary folk, those without the benefits of an education.

Neither the salesgirl nor John are educated; they haven't availed themselves of the government's policy of primary education. And so, between themselves, they continue to use the language that marks them out as being well outside the charmed circle of the social elite.

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