Re: Tina the Techwriter Reopens the Great Debate

Subject: Re: Tina the Techwriter Reopens the Great Debate
From: David Neeley <dbneeley -at- oddpost -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 10 Jun 2004 12:19:09 -0700 (PDT)




-----Original Message from "Jones, Donna" <DJones -at- zebra -dot- com>-----
"Does everyone else think in sentence fragments riddled with dangling modifiers, split
infinitives, and phonetic spelling? The Tina in me shudders at that thought!"

I'm reminded of the famous anecdote about Winston Churchill: "The alt.english.usage FAQ states that the story originated with an anecdote in Sir Ernest Gowersâ Plain Words (1948). Supposedly an editor had clumsily rearranged one of Churchillâs sentences to avoid ending it in a preposition...The FAQ goes on to say that the Oxford Companion to the English Language (no edition cited) states that the original was âThis is the sort of bloody nonsense up with which I will not put.â http://www.wsu.edu/~brians/errors/churchill.html

Frankly, there is much nonsense that became embedded in "proper English" with the spread of the printing press. Although I agree that the basics are important, as is the need for some standard in the search of the best possible understanding, there are also various "rules" that are even as we speak being made obsolete.

The problem lies in finding a middle ground upon which most might agree. The more gracefully the language is used, the less we need worry about artificial rules.

Regards to all,

David



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