Grammar, Usage, Dogma, and Fanatic Intolerance Essay

Grammar, Usage, Dogma, and Fanatic Intolerance Essay

Length: 1043 words (3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Strong Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Expressing oneself in proper English prose is imperative to becoming successful in an English speaking culture. The horrific reality of that statement pronounces a great insight into the character of English-speaking cultures; that English speaking societies severely judge the individuals of its community based on each individual’s education background in the field of Standard Written English. In Tense Present, David Foster Wallace gives several irrefutable points about the “seamy underbelly of United States Lexigraphy” and some very thought provoking insights to his own faulty perspective. One cannot ignore the unpleasant truth that Standard Written English is absolutely essential to being successful, but a dogmatic intolerance of those who are not quite as élite in their competency of Standard Written English is unnecessarily vile.
“The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it” (Flannery O’Conner). Wallace makes some excellent points that are practically irrefutable, though it would be idealistic if they were not. One point is that Standard Written English is necessary if you want an idea of your own to go beyond yourself. If an ill-equipped individual has an idea that they wish to spread, it would be quite rare for it to be taken seriously by any group of scholars. Many American intellectuals would immediately see multiple red flags of incompetency all over their “idea slate” and then immediately lose interest and respect for the idea. Just as Wallace said, there are plenty of other dialects that would be able to suffice just as well if not better; however, the target audience of any great idea is almost always somewhat of an elitist, so any other dialect used will be seen as a huge sign of incompeten...


... middle of paper ...


...groups, to clans, to communities, to religions, to countries, to races, and now it is fighting its way past dialects. The superb meme of universal empathy is slowly evolving and it is dogmatic people like “snoots” who are restricting the meme from propagating itself at a faster pace.
Obviously the solution is not for every intellectual to convert to Descriptionism, since that would propagate an exponentially expansive dictionary that would never end along with many other issues. Even more obviously, the solution is not for everyone to be Persciptionists for reasons that should not require further explanation. Democracy as the beautiful formula of moderation: to not be foolish by an incompetency of Standard Written English, and to not be antipathetic by means of a rancorous intolerance of those who are incompetent of Standard Written English, is the answer.



Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Grammar And Usage Of Grammar Education Essay

- In math, the importance of foundations is emphasized in every lesson. As I am often told by my girlfriend, “Sure, I can do calculus, but don’t expect me to count to four.” I relate to nothing more when it comes to my relationship with written English. I can string together sentences and write an essay, but please do not ask me the difference between who and whom, and god forbid I need to use a semicolon. Somehow, I reached my senior year in the English department and I haven’t gotten a grasp on things that are culturally considered part of a basic education....   [tags: Education, Linguistics, Noam Chomsky, Teacher]

Strong Essays
889 words (2.5 pages)

Essay on Can Students Learn Correct Grammar Usage Without Completing Curriculum?

- Can students learn correct grammar usage without completing curricula that include hours of tedious grammar exercises. According to experts and multiple studies conducted over the past half-century, the answer is a resounding yes. Infact, syllabi that require students to spend time reading and writing result in a more successful grammar education than structured grammar exercises. This is because students subjected to grammar programs, focused on exercises, are more likely to develop an aversion to writing....   [tags: Education, Teacher, Writing, Grammar]

Strong Essays
1054 words (3 pages)

Grammar : Grammar And The Structure Of A Language Essay

- Grammar is how to put words together to form proper sentences. In linguistics, grammar is the set of structural rules governing the composition of clauses, phrases, and words in any given natural language. The term refers also to the study of rules, and this field includes morphology, syntax, and phonology, often complemented by phonetics, semantics, and pragmatics. Grammar is the study of words and the ways words work together. It is also the study of the way the sentences of a language are constructed; morphology and syntax....   [tags: Linguistics, Grammar, Sentence, Syntax, Education]

Strong Essays
872 words (2.5 pages)

Essay on Pedagogical Grammar Methods : The Delineation Of Grammar

- The Delineation of Grammar When discussing the teaching of grammar, it is crucial to realise what the exact meaning of grammar is because grammar is more closely related, in instructors’ perspectives, to language pedagogy than of other modalities (Hudson,2012). In other words, to understand this study and its purposes to distinguish what pedagogical grammar methods should be implemented and what aspects of grammar teachers instruct in class, it is worth accentuating its definitions first. Consequently, it seems sensible to contemplate meanings regarding the term “grammar” with a view to finding out what the most common understanding of grammar is as there is lots of diversity in the usage of...   [tags: Linguistics, Grammar, Language acquisition]

Strong Essays
947 words (2.7 pages)

Essay on Descriptive Grammar Vs Prescriptive Grammar

- Descriptive Grammar Vs. Prescriptive Grammar When grammar is put to use in a society, people will often have different beliefs at what is the "right" or "proper" usage. This had led to the formation of two widely accepted forms of grammar, Prescriptivism and Descriptivism. These forms will often separate those who believe their form of grammar is the only correct way from those who use many forms they find to be acceptable. Descriptive grammar is formed by analyzing how speakers use a language, and deducing the rules they follow....   [tags: Linguistics, Grammar, Syntax, Sociolinguistics]

Strong Essays
1211 words (3.5 pages)

Essay about The Benefits of Studying Grammar

- Grammar has two primary approaches—prescriptive and descriptive. Prescriptive grammar is the general approach of right versus wrong, and historically the kind of approach overzealous English teachers apply to their students. Popular culture has lovingly deemed the rigid prescriptive grammarian the “Grammar Nazi,” which actually refers to the grade school graduate who clings tightly to the Latin based traditional rules and enforces those rules online. Due to these perspectives and due to various studies performed in classrooms, many have been rebuffing the study of grammar in schools....   [tags: Grammar and Writing]

Strong Essays
2583 words (7.4 pages)

Summary Of ' On The Need Of Some Grammar ' Essay

- Summary of “On the Need of Some Grammar” 1. In his chapter “On the Need of Some Grammar” found in Modern American Usage, Wilson Follett argues that we need grammar to govern our language. 2. Follett explains that the type of grammar we need is traditional. A traditional approach to grammar involves an emphasis on syntax. Syntax deals with how words relate to each other in a sentence. This knowledge of how words work together provides the type of logical analysis necessary to speak and write correctly....   [tags: Linguistics, Grammar, Linguistic prescription]

Strong Essays
1186 words (3.4 pages)

Essay on Grammar of Spoken and Written English

- Question (i) 1.0 Introduction: With technology, spoken language has become one of the major interests among linguists. Previously, written discourse was the main concern as it was easy to access any data whereas spoken language needed to go through various levels such as recording and transcribing in order to be able to obtain authentic data. Though it may sound easy, sometimes restrictions such as a low quality voice recorder was used or difficulty in transcribing slang would make it difficult for a linguist to go into detail of the spoken discourse....   [tags: Spoken English Grammar]

Strong Essays
2520 words (7.2 pages)

Formal Structure And Prescriptive Grammar Essay

- In academic writing, formal structure and prescriptive grammar are utilized for a variety of reasons: to convey ideas clearly, to seem professional, to demonstrate our level of education and vocabulary, to allow a benchmark for grading, and because it is simply the way people are taught in school. However, do these current measures truly have a place in academia. Do these standards harm more than they help. And is the way we teach writing truly the optimal way. There are many reasons why the current standards for academic writing should become more flexible....   [tags: Linguistics, Grammar, Language, English language]

Strong Essays
2414 words (6.9 pages)

Good Usage is Simply Correct Grammar Essay example

- Good Usage is Simply Correct Grammar What is good use. Does it even matter. Those are not easy questions to answer. Is good use just simply using correct grammar or is everyone who is using it just trying to speak above everyone else. What I mean by "trying to speak above others" is using large words, which you normally would not use, just to sound more intelligent than you actually are. I think the type of usage a person uses depends on the audience, the topic, and why the person is writing. Why does good usage have to involve more than just those items....   [tags: Teaching Writing Education Essays]

Strong Essays
812 words (2.3 pages)