Changing The American Language Essay, Research Paper
My brother and i are alike in that we both often have very strange dreams. A couple of months back, he dreamed that he was driving in Mexico with his best friend Jacob, when he got pulled over by the Mexican police. When asked if he was drunk, he replied with, “Of course not, sir. I dislike drunk drivers. I disapprove of drunk drivers. I discringe drunk drivers.” Hearing this, the police simply let him go. As he was driving away, however, Jacob turned to him and said, “Dude…discringe?” After reciting this story to me the next morning, he asked, “Amber…is discringe a word?” When i told him that it wasn’t, he decided that from then on it would be, and ever since has been using it as part of his everyday vocabulary. After hearing him use this made-up word as if it were real for awhile, I realized that he was right. Discringe, although not a real part of the English vocabulary, ought to be a real word, as should many other expressions used in everyday vernacular. There simply aren’t enough words to express the many varying and complex emotions we have. Because of the fact that it would add to the creativity of our language, help students differentiate between proper and improper grammar styles, and let us express ourselves in ways that before were very difficult to achieve, the English language ought to be revised to accommodate the changing needs of our society.From “spanglish” to ebonics, the English language is constantly being manipulated into all sorts of different forms to best suit its purpose. This is part of what makes the American culture so unique. Our language comes from three basic sources: what was brought over from the mother country, England, during settlement a mix of different languages and cultures all brought together into what is called the “melting pot” of American society and lastly, experiences and social reforms brought about by the ever-changing needs of a growing country. The third reason, however, has largely been neglected by professors and bureaucrats alike as a viable source of new vocabulary. Although many terms that are commonly used in everyday speech are perfectly functional as well as able to express their intended purpose, they simply are not acknowledged as part of what is considered to be “proper” grammar. For instance, the term “How are you doing?” has evolved into “How are you,” then to “What’s up,” and finally the phrase commonly being used on the streets today, ” ?Sup?” Although these expressions all convey the same message, the latter two are considered to be inappropriate in formal conversation. This, however, is ludicrous. Just as our culture has evolved, so has our language. In today’s busy world, people often do not wish to take the time to say “How are you,” when a simple ” ?Sup” would suffice. Contrary to the popular belief that this consolidation of terms leads to the degradation of the English language, I firmly believe that it actually adds to the color and variety that makes our culture so unique.Even if this were not reason enough, the consolidation and revision of our language can also ease students’ transition between “street” grammar and “school” grammar. One of the most difficult things for a student to learn is when it is appropriate to use certain terminology. For instance, one would not turn to a friend at a movie and say, “To whom was that character referring when he made his statement about love being folly?” Conversely, the same person would never go to a job interview and say, ” ?Sup, yo? I think this job would be cool because it would give me time to kick it with my friends after work, y’know?” There are always different grammar rules used in each situation. This is why so many students have such a difficult time with English classes, or even with simple essay writing for their other subjects. If the language was combined, so that both styles of speech were melded together, students would have a much easier time understanding the rules of grammar and of conversation. Additionally, there would be twice as many words and phrases to choose from when making the attempt to express oneself.The possibility for more effective self-expression is, i believe, the most convincing argument for this change. After all, language is power. I have often felt sorry for those people who have a limited vocabulary the less one knows the more difficult it is to express how one feels. Instead of saying, “That novel is completely lacking in verisimilitude,” they instead must say, “The book I read wasn’t really all that good because a lot of the time I didn’t believe the things it said.” Obviously, the first explanation was not only more concise, but clearer and more precise as well. With the addition of new words and phrases to our vocabulary, the magnitude of freedom offered would be tremendous. With every new word that one learns, their potential for complete self-expression is further explored. And as we have all been told time and time again, without clearly and completely expressing our feelings we can never be truly mentally stable, let alone happy.The addition of new words to the English language would not only aid self- expression, but add to the creativity of our culture and aid students in their quest for knowledge. Imagine, if you will, having the ability to communicate freely with others, regardless of situation or social status. This ability would not only help you in your studies, by lessening the number of grammar rules we all must know, but in day-to-day life as well. After all, no one likes being tongue-tied, or lost for words. In fact, I discringe it.