The Fight for English: How Language Pundits Ate, Shot, and Left

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Oxford University Press, 2006 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 239 pages
30 Reviews
The story of battles--both past and present--surrounding English language usage, The Fight for English explores why millions of people feel linguistically inferior. Unhappy with the "zero tolerance" approach to punctuation offered by Lynn Truss's Eats, Shoots, and Leaves, David Crystal offers a view of the subject that is much more balanced. Instead of answering the claims made by other manuals of English usage, Crystal provides an explanation and analysis of the genre as a whole.

Crystal weaves an intricate and engaging account that traces the history of the English language and its development over time. From Anglo-Saxon to Modern English, Crystal addresses why the same language issues that were bothering people 250 years ago are still bothering people today. This is the story of the fight for English usage--the story of the people who tried to shape the language in their own image, but failed generation after generation. In short, they ate, shot, and left.

The Fight for English brings language to life on the page with a witty and engaging writing style. Broadening the perspective on the English language, this compellingly informative book has something for everyone interested in the topic. Move over Harry Potter. Here comes punctuation.

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Review: The Fight for English: How Language Pundits Ate, Shot, and Left

User Review  - Grace Claus - Goodreads

Changed my perspective on prescriptive grammar! Read full review

Review: The Fight for English: How Language Pundits Ate, Shot, and Left

User Review  - Austin - Goodreads

Very fun book if you're into a bit of history about the culture fights over keeping English "pure" or "correct" or what have you. I certainly lean more descriptivist than prescriptivist in my language ... Read full review



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About the author (2006)

David Crystal is the foremost writer and lecturer on the English language, with a world-wide reputation and over 100 books to his name. He is Honorary Professor of Linguistics at the University of Wales, Bangor, and has been awarded an OBE for services to the English Language.

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