Language And The Language Of Language Essay

1332 Words 6 Pages
Language, by its very nature, is always growing, expanding, and changing rapidly. The history of human language has seen many alterations, expansions, and reinventions of languages. With the evolution of language came the elitist prescriptivism movement, characterized by a rejection of new linguistic changes, often informed by classism, racism, misogyny, and a fear of change. Many linguistic developments have been created by young people, especially teenage girls, including the linguistic trend “vocal fry”, commonplace among many young women. This trend has angered many, as well as modern grammatical changes effected by teenagers, for instance words like “like” and “literally”. Rather than these changes being abominations to the English language, they are innovations, displaying the use of language at its full vitality, constantly evolving and being stretched, altered, and rearranged by its speakers. The practice of elevating one kind language use over another is called “prescriptivism”. Prescriptivists believe that their style of language is better than others and promote the usage of their own way of speaking and writing above others. Prescriptivism has historically been informed by religion, class status, and race. Prescriptivists have tried to resist the natural evolution of language. English-speaking prescriptivists have said that our language is being ruined by foreign loanwords, young people’s slang, and American English. And yet, in spite of their protests, English…

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