How has the English language evolved?
We are living in a new age of the English language. Long gone are the days of ye olde English with Shakespearian theatres bellowing out the sounds of…
Romeo, Romeo! wherefore art thou Romeo?
Not too many of us speak like Shakespeare these days. The language has evolved and developed beyond our imagination. We can now see language teachers and learners often falling into one of two camps.
On the one side, we have the descriptivists, who look at the language as it is actually used in everyday life by real people and how the language evolves over time and not clinging on to old terminology or out of date practices.
On the other side of the spectrum, we have prescriptivists who tend to study the rules of English closely and spend their time disseminating them in order to maintain the quality of language. Using ‘LOL IDK’ is completely unforgivable to this type of language enthusiast.
Where do you fall on the evolution of the English language?
Most people fall somewhere in-between. Although, if I had to pick I’d say I was closer to a descriptivist as I’m the type of person who would rather look forward and stay on trend than fall behind.
To stay on trend you can use a useful tool on Google to see how the usage of the word has evolved over time. A good example of this would be the word ‘seldom’
A more appropriate word to use would be ‘rarely’. Although many non-native speakers do find this a tricky word to pronounce!
Ok, so we can see some words are going out of date rapidly. However, this means new words are entering our language at an unprecedented rate including the words; twerk, selfie, bromance and using abbreviations like DM (direct message) or PM (private message).
What do you think about the evolution?
From my perspective, I somewhat agree that some of these words are questionable in their origin, however, it’s important to be aware of and gain an understanding of this new form of communication.
Want to chat about the difference between the two or talk about which method is preferable? Join me for a lesson and learn new words and expressions.