The Fight for English

The Fight for English

How Language Pundits Ate, Shot, and Left

Book - 2006
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This is the story of a thousand years of argument about 'correct' English, as world renowned expert David Crystal provides the first thorough-going assessment of the ongoing debate. With a lively and accessible approach, Crystal charts the battles, past and present. He combines a chronological survey of key influences in the area of usage, and looks ahead to the future in the context of recent education policy shifts.
Publisher: Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2006
Characteristics: xi, 239 p. ; 20 cm
ISBN: 019920764X
Call Number: 420.9 CRYSTAL

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Nov 10, 2018

The clarity of the writing, the friendliness of the explanations, and the perfect organization - marrying chronological development and analytical divisions - make this another terrific book on English by Crystal. His case for the pluralistic view is made strongly but softly, but unfortunately not elaborated on much (what does he recommend about what sort of language to use in each context? how does one recognize which context is which, and what conventions are the appropriate ones? These are issues of pragmatics, the contours of which are constantly being negotiated - but that doesn't mean that it is appropriate to challenge them at all opportunities to do so). His undressing of the tactics of language pundits would be most helpful to everyone learning English (finickyness is the common characteristic of English teachers).

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