English varieties (was: Word Order)

Colin Fine colin at kindness.demon.co.uk
Wed Apr 6 14:42:55 EDT 2005


Well, I said I was being provocative, didn't I!

I think I've been inadvertently rumbled: I am a committed Pinkerite. I'm 
aware that he's not popular in many academic circles (as indeed is true 
of his hero Chomsky), but I find The Language Instinct a very clear and 
readable account of what I believe to be a very useful - and 
distressingly unfamiliar - approach to how language works, and so I lend 
recommend it and lend my copy round abundantly.

Like several other posters, I also was brought up to speak a standard 
(read 'middle-class') variety, and have 'It is I' and 'whom' in my 
idiolect. But I nevertheless hold that they are part of a 'learned' 
language that is acquired naturally by nobody.

I think I'll leave it there ....


Colin

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