What It REALLY Means To Be Trilingual

IDK, I think this is just going to be slam poetry month, ‘kay? ‘Kay. Anyway, this one’s lovely, and touches on a topic that fascinates me both as an English teacher and as a trained linguist. We tend to have this view that anyone who can’t speak ‘proper’ English is lower, defective in some way. But this erases the totally glorious truth, which is that NO ONE speaks English ‘properly’, because what do you even MEAN by English? American? British? Australian? Singaporean? East coast Australia or West coast Australia? Texan or Alaskan? Southern British or northern British? Etc. Like, linguistically speaking, there is NO One True English.

This kind of attitude also totally ignores the fact that different variations of English, even when they ‘mangle’ the original words/grammar/whatever, still have really strict rules themselves. I am, for example, totally fluent in internet English, which is a totally different dialect to spoken east-coast Australian English; while it might superficially seem like phrases such as ‘It me!’ are just being blatantly ungrammatical, actually there’s a new set of grammar rules at play which mean that while it’s totes fab to say ‘It me!’ (or ‘totes fab’), it’s NOT grammatical in internet-English to say ‘It amazing!’ (at this point; internet English even more so than any other variant, dialect, pigeon, etc, changes FAST).

There is no One True English. People who speak other variants aren’t dumb, they’re just using a different grammar system. And unless we’re all supposed to go back to speaking Old English (Wes þū hāl!), well, grammar systems change with time and geography. That’s just Language. So we can rail about the ‘declining standards of English due to the internet/migrants/texting/whatever’, or we can celebrate the awesome creativity of the human mind, and appreciate different styles of grammar. I think you know which side I’m on 😉 😀 hehe.

Anyway, rant over, enjoy the vid, and your soon-coming weekend!! <3

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