English varieties (was: Word Order)

deborah deborah.dwj at suberic.net
Wed Apr 6 14:49:08 EDT 2005


On Wed, 6 Apr 2005, Colin Fine wrote:
|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.

Okay, I gotta ask -- and I ask not to be provocative but because I'm
genuinely confused -- how are these statements not contradictory?

Unless you mean that you grew up saying "who" but had your hand slapped
until you learned "whom".  Which was not the case for me; who/whom, like
the remaining English subjunctive on conditionals, is just part of the
language I learned to speak.  The rule came later, which is why I had
such a hard time learning French; the teachers assumed that since I
could use objects and subjects correctly in English I knew what they
were, but I'd merely learned them as my natural language.

-deborah
--
Can the gods catch flu?  I think I may have given it to all of them.
					-- chrestomanci

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