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Beyond Grammar: Pesky pronouns – they

A man I know has his knickers in a twist over pronouns. He is concerned that people will be fined for using the wrong pronoun, and his nephew goes so far as to say that “political correctness,” as exemplified in a discussion about pronouns, is a “cancer on society.” It’s all balled up with freedomContinue reading “Beyond Grammar: Pesky pronouns – they”

Beyond Grammar: Grammar and Meaning

Grammatical correctness and meaning are two separate functions, and they don’t always coexist. Noam Chomsky devised a sentence with perfect grammar and no meaning: Colorless green ideas sleep furiously. It is also possible to devise a sentence which a listener or reader can understand though it is grammatically incorrect. Another reason why he dislikes lotsContinue reading “Beyond Grammar: Grammar and Meaning”

Beyond Grammar: Gun talk in America

There has to be a cultural change before the gun violence subsides, and that change is in our own hands in a way that legislation is not. Just as we are changing our culture by revising language regarding race and gender, we might revisit our use of gun language. The first step is to increase our awarenessContinue reading “Beyond Grammar: Gun talk in America”