Komodo Dragon Expert (calieber) wrote in linguaphiles,
Komodo Dragon Expert
calieber
linguaphiles

Does English have rules?

I'm in an on-line discussion with someone who asserts that because the English language has no governing body, it has no rules. His supporting argument is that a lot of prescriptive rules that were formerly taught are rules of Latin grammar, (mis)applied to English. I noted that Latin had no governing body at its height either. He's taking the hyperdescriptivist/strawdesciptivist position that anything that can be understood by Anglophones is English.

So I put it to the experts: how am I wrong, how is he wrong, and what can I say to make third parties think I'm no wronger than I am and he's no less wrong than he is?
Subscribe

  • Post a new comment

    Error

    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened

    Your IP address will be recorded 

  • 68 comments