For some time my morning reading of the Dom-Post has been punctuated by yells of anguish and shrieks of disbelief. What terrible calamity or new political idiocy is provoking these noisy outbursts? None. I'm reacting to the extraordinary abuse of the English language I see in its pages every day (and hear on TV).
Now I learn, via the invaluable Beattie's Book Blog, that this plague has spread throughout the US press. In the Washington Post, Gene Weingarten mourns the death of English. To his all too familiar examples, found in papers large and small all over the country - alot, mispronounciation, eeking out a living, prostrate cancer, between you and I - I can add many, many more: less people/games/cars, Porirua being "more dear" than Wellington in terms of house prices, endless mismatchings of plural subjects with singular verbs and vice versa, the use of "of" to replace a wide range of prepositions (confused of, bored of, concerned of)... Tragic. I know that's the word many people would use to describe the fact that I even notice such things, let alone care about them. But that is their problem.
This week Alice Munro will receive the Nobel prize for literature. Lisa Allardice, who met Munro in Canada after the publication of her collection The View...
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