Re: The Anthroplogy of the New World

Phillip Bigelow (
Fri, 16 Dec 1994 02:02:41 GMT writes:

>( The type of language that one ecounters in
>"Riddley Walker" or "A Clockwork Orange" could easily evolve
>in a couple of generations, although in these books it's
>meant to *represent* an even more changed language.)
> John Blyth

Robert McNeil wrote a book on the way the English language has changed
through time (If memory serves, it was called _The History of the English
Language_ or something close to that title). McNeil noted that, depending
on how one defines "growth", the North American variety of the language is
more dynamic and growing stronger (adapting) than is the "Queen's English".
We have more junk phrases, slang, sloppy sentence structure, and new
nomenclature than do the British (although I am firmly convinced that the
Cockney Brits have us beat on the number and evolution of obscenities and
vulgarities) :) Eventually, many of these unacceptable words and
phrases become incorporated into our standard vocabulary and dictionaries.
There are more North American-derived additions to the language appearing in
english-speaking countries, according to McNeil, than British-derived. I
don't know quite what to make of it all, but my Anglo-phile next door
neighbor got pretty livid when I showed him the book.
:) <pb>