British English For Learners English Language Essay

The chief tendency or the preferable option in learning English as a 2nd or foreign linguistic communication is to lodge to the British theoretical account as if this were one and the same with standard English. However, the affair of criterion or ‘correct ‘ English remains unfastened for farther contention, an facet which will be dealt with in a undermentioned subchapter.

Cipher can deny the distinction of the British English, its importance when efforts to make a standard English are made. The present district of Great Britain remains doubtless the topographic point where the English linguistic communication was born, its history being really good known and mostly discussed in about every book of grammar or linguistics.

This is, of class, the chief ground for which the first contact with the English linguistic communication is made by analyzing its beginnings, its development on British ‘grounds ‘ , so to talk. Still, the emphasis on the British English is non wholly justified. It is a natural thing to learn the new scholars the British English grammar in order to hold a point of mention in their farther recognitions, but it is non one hundred per cent ‘correct ‘ to enforce merely the British manner of spelling, of authorship, or, even more undue, of pronouncing.

Two common beliefs in the American society are that there is merely one right pronunciation and one correct spelling for each word, and that the significances listed in the dictionary represent the ‘correct ‘ use established by some ‘incontestable ‘ authorization ( as identified in sub-subchapter 2.1. ) . These positions are convenient in the sense that they enable parents to rectify their kids, and they facilitate the instruction of standardised values to pupils ‘ spoken and written usage of linguistic communication. The ‘correct ‘ pronunciation may change within certain boundaries in a regional speech pattern, but spelling and intending are normally considered to be lasting. Any divergence from the ‘correct ‘ signifier is regarded as slang, nonstandard use or even a societal blooper.

In his book on American Pronunciation, John Samuel Kenyon considers that the pupils ‘ trouble in distinguishing between certain vowels or consonants and separating degrees of emphasis is caused by the misdirected direction of school instructors, sing ‘correct ‘ pronunciation, who lack the consciousness of the comparative nature of criterion:

[ aˆ¦ ] pupils will ever utilize a version of the linguistic communication that is somewhat or mostly different from the linguistic communication of their instructors and societal critics who dream of maintaining linguistic communication from altering must finally accept the shifting of vowels ( e.g. , unifying mid and low forepart vowels before /r/ so that there are no longer three different vowels in Mary, merry, marry in modern-day American English ) , spelling alterations that reflect common use ( spelt-spelled, all right-alright ) , the relaxing of certain use regulations ( I shall-I will ) . ( Kenyon 15 )

Contemporary surveies in English have demonstrated the fact that each individual has an idiolect, that is a personal, alone manner of speech production, which makes practically impossible a ‘perfect ‘ acquisition of a new linguistic communication ( perfect in the sense of complete rightness and truth every bit same as a native talker of the new erudite linguistic communication ) . Despite that, the chief inclination of the instructors of English is to keep their penchant for the British theoretical account. However, pupils will ne’er be able to follow the British ‘way ‘ which is so hard and demands serious attempts on the scholar ‘s portion. That is why, the opposite inclination, the scholars ‘ one, is to simplify the new cognition every bit much as possible, seeking to be closer to the American English theoretical account which is non every bit rigorous as its ‘mother ‘ ( an facet dealt with in a undermentioned subchapter ) .

Still, what is a ‘pretender ‘ of English? This term seems to be connoting some contention, excessively. Most lexicons translate the term as an equivalent to ‘prefacut ‘ , ‘ipocrit ‘ , ‘simulator ‘ , a definition which seems instead unjustified in the present context. The manner in which it should be interpreted for a proper apprehension in this context is to compare it with ‘pretendent La ‘ in the sense of ‘aspirant La ‘ . This means that a Pretender of English is a individual who aspires to a stretch of some high values, of some high criterions, imposed by others.

Another inquiry which arises now is: “ Who are the ‘imposers ‘ of English? “ , a inquiry whose answering to is of high importance for the presentation of the theories expressed here. Apparently, and queerly at the same clip, the individuals who impose the British theoretical account are non the British people! Great Britain does non look to hold the equivalent of a Gallic Academy or of an institute of linguistics meant to keep the pureness of the English linguistic communication. On the contrary, its receptivity to new words is extraordinary. It is this general receptivity of new elements which has contributed to doing the English linguistic communication a suited and attractive vehicle in so many parts of the universe.

Taking into consideration the fact that linguistic communication normally reflects the spirit of the age ( so that ‘old ‘ words can readily modify their significance in conformity with the latest mentality of a given society ) , it is apparent that countless new words and looks are required in order to cover with the great and ever-increasing complexness of modern life, encompassed as it is by the quickly altering societal and proficient conditions of our clip.

In effect, paradoxically, the imposers of a rigorous, hard theoretical account of English are non the English people! It seems instead unusual that the non-native instructors of English are the 1s that after holding taught the British theoretical account as a point of mention for farther developing accomplishments stick to it and seek to enforce it on their pupils non taking into consideration their lingual abilities, their receptivity to more simplified theoretical accounts. The personal experience of the writer has led him to the decision that there should be a clear dissociation of involvements when the survey of the English linguistic communication is concerned. The scholars should show their grounds for the English linguistic communication acquisition in conformity with their hereafter involvements and should be offered the option to take between the British theoretical account and a simplified, ‘unpretentious ‘ one. A batch of defeat would be avoided if this facet were taken into consideration.

Still, the affair of ‘pretendership ‘ remains open to farther treatments. The term ‘pretenders ‘ of English remains valid, but merely if applied in the right context. Therefore, the Pretender of English is normally a non-native talker with minimal cognition of the foreign linguistic communication who inadequately inserts English footings in the vocabulary of his native linguistic communication. For a better apprehension of the term the research paper has been provided with a instance survey presented in the subchapter entitled “ English Footings in Fashion Inadequately Used ” where the focal point is on the Rumanian talkers and the relaxation with which they adapt new English footings, unluckily most of the clip in an unequal manner.

2.1. ‘Correct ‘ English.

Most English instructors have a instead unusual inclination to handle the English linguistic communication as if all its talkers used it in a unvarying manner, mostly disregarding the fact that every linguistic communication has more than one assortment, particularly in the manner in which it is spoken. This fluctuation in address is really a really of import facet of our day-to-day lives as language-users in different societal communities, a state of affairs which represents the focal point of the present subchapter.

In an effort to supply a distinct definition of right English I was surprised to detect a existent untalkative attitude of linguists with respect to this affair: either they place right English between inverted commas ( as George Yule in a personal attack to the subject of linguistic communication assortments ) or refer to it in footings of ‘good ‘ or ‘bad ‘ English ( as it is the instance of W. Nelson Francis in an essay, otherwise pertinent, on societal and educational assortments of English ) . Yet the definition of right English seems to happen solid support in the linguists ‘ efforts to compare ‘correct ‘ with ‘standard ‘ which lets, of class, the argument unfastened for farther contentions.

It is rather a paradox to enforce on scholars of English its ‘correct ‘ usage when no 1 can really supply a proper definition at least non at the same clip with acknowledging the fact that there are societal assortments of English, differing in pronunciation, grammar and vocabulary. These are in fact, harmonizing to Francis, “ the natural manner of address of people who differ in instruction and in the place they occupy in the societal system. ” Dwight Bolinger refers to this natural manner of address in footings of idiolect, sing that there are no single-style talkers and that it is possible for the same individual to hold one manner of speech production in the market topographic point and another one at place, both within a individual address community:

The talker ‘s grammar is comparatively compact. It is a portion of his individuality ; he is non expected to be other than what he is, unless he is an histrion, and great versatility is non demanded of him. But he has to interact with others who are what they are, and whose foibles he must somehow surmount. ( Bolinger 331 )

Apparently, under such fortunes, there is no demand for farther analysis on right English: a individual has a natural manner of utilizing linguistic communication, he or she will surely talk with an speech pattern, there is no ground to enforce a criterion every bit long as it is impossible for a scholar of English to accomplish it. Yet when depicting the sounds, words and sentences of English, most instructors concentrate on the characteristics of merely one assortment, normally labeled standard English. George Yule, in his book The Study of Language, defines standard English as the assortment which is fundamentally used in newspapers, books and other mass media and which is besides taught in schools. He admits that it is besides the assortment which instructors usually try to enforce on those who want to larn English as a 2nd linguistic communication.

In an effort to support such inclinations of enforcing a certain facet of the English linguistic communication, viz. the ‘correct ‘ one, professors Curtis W. Hayes, Jacob Ornstein and William W. Cage, co-authors for The ABC ‘s of Languages and Linguistics, fault the traditional grammar which decreed how English must be spoken and written, influenced by the ‘perfect ‘ Latin constructions, and non how it really was spoken or written. They admit the major defect of traditional grammar ‘s ‘prescriptive regulations ‘ , viz. that of learning pupils how they must compose and speak instead than depicting how they really talk and write. The pupils were taught English by holding them correct ‘wrong ‘ sentences of the type “ Do n’t utilize a preposition to stop a sentence with ” or “ Do n’t divide infinitives ” .

The traditional grammar ‘s inclination was therefore to stress the written linguistic communication instead than the spoken, an attitude which was presumptively a effect of the fact that sacred paperss and literature were written. Fortunately, structuralists countered by sing speech primary while authorship was a manner of entering address. Yet they have n’t provided a clear differentiation between composing and address, excluding the fact that we do non ever speak as we write or frailty versa. However, the nineteenth century ‘Doctrine of Correctness ‘ , as the aiming for a standard authorship and speech production was called, was profoundly affected by the meritable activity of bookmans like Ferdinand de Saussure, Leonard Bloomfield and Josef Mukarovsky. They believed that the analysis of a linguistic communication must get down with the survey of its typical sounds, their fluctuations, viz. its phonemes, therefore denoting the birth of generative-transformational grammar.

Presents, despite all serious and pertinent attempts made to turn out that a scholar of English would accomplish the linguistic communication much easier and would be able to talk it more fluently if regulations and norms were non imposed on him, the ‘Doctrine of Correctness ‘ seems to be still ‘up-to-date ‘ . It is, so, hard to give up a tendency which has lasted for centuries, but non impossible. As it has already been mentioned in the introductory chapter English is about to go the universe ‘s ‘lingua franca ‘ and that does n’t connote regulations and norms at every measure meant to do an English talker ‘stumble ‘ . Despite occasional troubles encountered both at the written and spoken degree, there is a common intelligibility among talkers of different idioms, or assortments, of English, a fact worth to be taken into consideration by the ‘imposers ‘ of English regulations and norms.

2.2. Standard English.

In order to hold a clear apprehension of the term ‘standard ‘ English we must follow the hints of its development and travel back to the period of two hundred old ages after the Norman Conquest. At that clip, most of the legal paperss, the instruments which controlled the political and concern personal businesss of the English people, were written in the English linguistic communication, but besides in Gallic and Latin which were besides used for much of the literature and books of larning familiar to the upper categories.

Although the authorship was in English, there was no individual type of English common to all English Hagiographas. The greatest figure of Hagiographas used what was called the Southern idiom. This peculiar idiom had been centered in Winchester the main metropolis of King Alfred and his replacements until the clip of the Norman Conquest, and it was the type of English in which more and more important Hagiographas were produced. In the fourteenth and 15th centuries London was the metropolis to go the political and societal caput of English life in a more incorporate England. Thus, the English of London was used in the legal paperss of political relations and concern, and due to the fact that more of the of import personal businesss were conducted in this London English, it became the standard English. Therefore, “ standard English is, historically, a local idiom which was used to transport on the major personal businesss of English life and which gained thereby a societal prestigiousness ” ( qtd. in Kerr 315 ) .

In America, nevertheless, there was no organized centre for the political, societal and rational personal businesss. More than that, the great distances between assorted parts of the United States made really hard contacts in the earlier yearss. However, standard English in the United States, although arising in London English, developed as a different, single entity. The divergencies between American English and British English go back to colonial times. Initially, the American settlers accepted the standard linguistic communication of Britain as their criterion. Due to the battle for political independency, the American people decided to obtain lingual independency, excessively, and even proclaimed the being of American linguistic communication as different from the English linguistic communication. Americans no longer depended on Britain in the affair of authorization in linguistic communication. In topographic point of one criterion English, there were now two criterions: one for Britain and one for the United States. Still, despite the fact that Americans do non turn to British governments for their lingual norms ( some may even mock at the peculiar characteristics of British English ) , they believe that they portion a common linguistic communication with the talkers of British English. On the other manus, even if British talkers do non ever agree with the American usage of the English linguistic communication, they normally admit that Americans speak English, excessively.

The word criterion is extremely discussed in about every book on English linguistics. However, it is often used, but without a complete framing of its significances. A first overview of the term was encountered in Ricks and Michaels ‘s The State of The Language:

The standard linguistic communication in the United States and Britain is the prestige assortment of the linguistic communication used by those regarded as educated. Neither state has a standard pronunciation associated with educated talkers, though some pronunciations may be liked or valued more than others. Standardization is manifested largely in grammar and vocabulary ( though at that place may besides be some standard regional fluctuations ) and in spelling and punctuation. ( 18 )

The interesting fact here is that this procedure of standardisation in the United States and Britain was non imposed or controlled by the province, by a authorities bureau or by a linguistic communication academy, that is the procedure was non planned. It is believed that it emerged from a common understanding on what educated talkers and authors accepted as correct. This understanding was nevertheless shaped by the amplification of lexicons, grammars and ushers to usage which prescribe the bounds of fluctuation in the standard linguistic communication for spelling, punctuation, signifiers of words, significances of words, and the appropriate manners for certain utilizations of the linguistic communication. Standard English is besides required in the instruction system, it is preserved in printing by English editors, who do non waver to rectify the linguistic communication of their writers.

If we take into consideration the fact that over the last two centuries Britain and the United States have been the dominant English-speaking states in cultural influence, economic and military power, the ‘imposing ‘ of their linguistic communication criterions on foreign scholars of English seems in a manner justified. However, scholars should be left with the option of taking a preferable criterion ( British or American ) , and should absorb it in conformity to their personal involvements. It is rather hard to understand the penchant for British English which is more hard, particularly from the point of position of its pronunciation, and why non a parallel instruction of both English criterions, which could appeal more to the scholars whose demand for linguistic communication accomplishments is at the present minute ague.

2.3. Anglicisms

The Rumanian linguistic communication is extremely antiphonal to neologies, which non merely allows its lasting enrichment, but besides the modernisation or even the internationalisation of the Rumanian vocabulary. Still, the great figure of bing neologies in the existent Rumanian linguistic communication create serious troubles in the procedure of verbal communicating, particularly from the point of position of their insufficient and wrong assimilation, a state of affairs frequently encountered even in cultivated societal categories.

A difficult to challenge truth is the fact that in the last decennaries, particularly after 1989, the Rumanian vocabulary has practically been beset by a series of Anglicisms, frequently including footings without an equivalent in our linguistic communication, as they denote comparatively really recent worlds from assorted modern-day spheres.

Romania ‘s efforts to incorporate into the Euroatlantic constructions has found most Romanians insufficiently prepared non merely economically or politically, but besides with respect to their ability ( or inability ) to absorb in a proper manner the battalion of foreign footings ( preeminently ) of English beginning ) which ‘invade ‘ our day-to-day being.

The commercial, banking, cultural or featuring vocabulary for illustration is highly ‘sensitive ‘ to the demands imposed by international communicating, normally runing with English footings that are familiar largely to the younger coevalss. Yet, these footings are most of the clip inadequately used, either from the point of position of their pronunciation, of their use in a proper context, at the right minute, or from the point of position of imputing some plural signifiers which wrongly correspond to the manner of organizing the plural in Romanian ( the illustration of the word ‘grapefruit ‘ which in Rumanian becomes ‘grefe ‘ or ‘grefuri ‘ alternatively of ‘grepfrut ‘ is really good known ) .

A serious job refering the facet dealt with in this subdivision is the fact that the people who really use such English footings in a proper manner ( due chiefly to their old cognition of English ) are merely a few. When they decently use such footings in contexts that besides involve the presence of the antecedently mentioned ‘pretenders ‘ of English, they are confronted with rather abashing, uncomfortable state of affairss in which they are paradoxically considered the ‘wrong users ‘ by the existent 1s. Queerly plenty, the former class, the ‘correct users ‘ , prefer following the improper uses of such footings, instead than rectifying them and put on the lining to be misunderstood or, by no agencies, understood by the ‘pretenders ‘ .

The chief ground for such improper uses of the English footings in our linguistic communication seems to be the media where we have witnessed non merely one time mistakes of the type dealt with in this subchapter. Ironically, in news media the most frequent error is the erroneous usage of the term ‘mass media ‘ itself. In English, ‘mass media ‘ is a sawed-off signifier of the phrase ‘mass media of communicating ‘ which practically refers to the entirety of agencies of informing the multitudes ( wireless, telecasting, imperativeness, film, postings etc. ) . In Rumanian there has been an erroneous phrase, viz. ‘mijloace mass-media ‘ , a excess discrepancy as ‘media ‘ agencies precisely ‘mijloace ‘ . An even more utmost instance is the excess building ‘mijloace de informare mass-media ‘ . Anyway, despite that, the media remains the chief agencies of informing the multitudes and, implicitly, the errors made by the newsmans of such establishments become everybody else ‘s errors.

For illustration, if one hears on the wireless the pronunciation of the English term ‘safe ‘ as ‘se-if ‘ he or she will automatically absorb it as right establishing on the premise that the staff hired in such authorised establishments are of high competency. They should be competent plenty to cognize at least the hazard of borrowing words from other linguistic communications, and particularly from English a linguistic communication that is non related to Romanian. If Rumanian talkers do non cognize that the English adjectival ‘safe ‘ bases for the Rumanian noun ‘seif ‘ which should be pronounced in one syllable because it contains the descending diphtong ‘ei ‘ , they should avoid utilizing it and replace it with footings from their ain vocabulary. They could besides seek in any of the recent books on how to talk and compose right in Romanian, which trade with the appropriate use of such freshly borrowed footings. It is a certainty that it is a batch easier to state ‘seif ‘ alternatively of ‘casa de prohibition ‘ ( hard currency registry ) or “ dulap de metal in attention se pastreaza prohibition, hartii importante sau obiecte de valoare ” ( metal board used for maintaining money or valuable paperss and objects ) , a definition given by explanatory lexicons.

Actually, the preciseness of the sense, and the shortening and simplifying of some Rumanian constructions are considered to be one of the advantages of utilizing such Anglicisms, besides their international character which facilitates the exchange of information and of engineerings between specializers. Still, the usage of such footings has become inordinate, particularly in the context of a vocabulary whose profusion would let for a fluent and precise manner of showing thoughts while esteeming the norms of a standard linguistic communication, such as accurateness, conciseness, lucidity and rightness. These belongingss could be respected merely by taking the footings to accurately show the thoughts which stand for the object of communicating.

When articulating neologisms the first thing which should be avoided is pedantry, the effort to articulate the words in an ‘English manner ‘ at any cost – that is the introducing of sounds that do non belong to the phonic register of the Rumanian linguistic communication – along with a serious sound ‘damaging ‘ of the loan word which could make a province of non-similarity with its beginning.

Unfortunately, the snobbism of most Rumanian talkers is pushed to the bounds each twenty-four hours, a thing which could shortly do us the informants of an unpleasant procedure of ‘spoiling ‘ non merely the English linguistic communication in the Rumanian context, but, even worse, besides a procedure of ‘spoiling ‘ our ain linguistic communication at its place.

2.3.1. English – Rumanian Phonetic Differences

The widespread sentiment harmonizing to which the English linguistic communication has a really hard pronunciation likely originates in the undermentioned facets:

– the being of some English sounds along with some characteristics related to the combine of sounds in address, to emphasize, beat and modulation, which differ well from their Rumanian letter writers ;

– the disagreement between the phonic characteristics of the Rumanian system of writing system in which one and the same sound can be rendered in authorship by more letters or groups of letters.

The differences dealt with in this subchapter will be between the British English pronunciation ( the one spoken in Southern England ) and the Romanian phonetic system which makes so hard an accurate acquisition of the English linguistic communication, an facet which should be paid the necessary attending to by the antecedently mentioned ‘imposers ‘ of English.

The right pronunciation of the English linguistic communication ‘s vowels is rather hard for the Rumanian scholars, chiefly due to the different quality of those phonemes and their different figure in the two linguistic communications. The English linguistic communication has twelve simple vowels, while the Rumanian 1 has merely seven simple vowels which can look in any topographic point within a word. The Rumanian vowel /i/ does non hold an English equivalent.

One can state that in English there are ‘two types ‘ of [ I ] , [ O ] , [ u ] etc. These ‘types ‘ are in most of the instances qualitatively and quantitatively different. Replacing [ I: ] with [ I ] is implicitly followed by the obtaining of an wholly different word, as for illustration seek [ Si: K ] ‘a cauta ‘ , ill [ sik ] ‘bolnav ‘ , lead [ Li: vitamin D ] ‘a conduce ‘ , lid [ palpebra ] ‘capac ‘ . In Rumanian, articulating the word common hop with short, regular [ I ] or with long [ I: ] when we want to stress it, like when crying “ Bine, common hop! “ , does non alter the word ‘s individuality.

The vowel [ I ] does non hold a Rumanian equivalent and it is rather a hard to get sound. It is really frequently wrongly perceived as the [ vitamin E ] sound by the Rumanian scholars of English, and pronounced as the Rumanian [ I ] , although it is shorter than it. Another similar illustration is the instance of vowel [ ? ] which is even more hard for the Rumanian talkers who tend to replace it by [ vitamin E ] and even [ a ] . As for vowel [ I± : ] Rumanian talkers have to do particular attempts to make its right pronunciation, by utilizing it in words like factor, trag, cal. Mention must be made here of the fact that this vowel is otherwise pronounced in American English, excessively, being replaced by vowel [ ? ] in words like past [ p?st ] , answer [ ?nse ] , aunt [ ?nt ] . Actually, even in British English, in some words, vowels [ ? ] and [ I± ] can replace one another, both pronunciations being accepted: exposure [ _grI± : degree Fahrenheit ] , [ _gr?f ] , telegraph [ _grI± : degree Fahrenheit ] , [ A­_gr?f ] , contrast [ _trI± : st ] , [ _tr?st ] etc.

The English phonic registry besides includes 24 consonants, most of them holding a Rumanian equivalent. However, there are noticeable differences sing the phonic quality of the English consonants, whose disregarding confers the pronunciation a strong foreign speech pattern.

For illustration, for some Romanians who learn English, a common error consists of the palatalization of consonants [ T, vitamin D ] , particularly of [ K, g ] , that is the softening of this consonants through infixing a short sound, [ one ] , right after them. This error – encountered in the pronunciation of words like twenty-four hours [ deI ] , cake [ keIk ] , take [ teIk ] , game [ geIm ] as [ diei ] , [ tieik ] , [ kieik ] , [ gieim ] – should be avoided by the scholars whose involvements are to make a pronunciation similar to the native talkers ‘ one.

A particular attending should be paid to the consonants [ I? , A° ] which are specific to the English linguistic communication and make non be in the Rumanian 1. They can be really easy taken for [ s ] , [ z ] or [ f ] , [ v ] which are besides spirants, or for Rumanian [ T ] and [ vitamin D ] which are dental from the jointing point of position and therefore closer to [ I? , A° ] . The replacing of [ I? , A° ] by [ s ] , [ z ] , [ degree Fahrenheit ] , [ V ] , [ t ] or [ 500 ] should be avoided as it consequences in the alteration of intending throughout the procedure of communicating. Besides velar [ A‹ ] is a affair of serious troubles for the Rumanian talkers larning English being most of the clip pronounced as the alveolar [ N ] .

The troubles which appear in the pronunciation of the English words by Rumanian people are non caused merely by the differences which exist between the English and Rumanian sound systems. They are besides due to the phonic written text of the sounds. The English alphabet, dwelling of 26 letters, is used for rendering 44 sounds ( 20 vowels and 24 consonants ) . A Rumanian individual who learns English transportations on one manus the dealingss between sounds and letters from Rumanian into the English linguistic communication, and on the other manus, after larning to tie in a certain sound with a certain missive in English, discovers that his freshly acquired cognition does non use the same manner in all state of affairss.

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