From: EvelynVogtGamble(Divamanque) on 15 Jul 2006 14:03
Dave Frightens Me wrote:
> On Fri, 14 Jul 2006 09:12:14 -0700, "EvelynVogtGamble(Divamanque)"
> <evgmsop(a)earthlink.net> wrote:
>>Carole Allen wrote:
>>>>Padraig Breathnach writes:
>>>>>Your students are hardly a representative sample, as they failed to
>>>>>achieve a satisfactory standard in English in school.
>>>On Tue, 11 Jul 2006 18:28:09 +0200, Mxsmanic <mxsmanic(a)gmail.com>
>>>>They are not my only sample. The substandard level of English is
>>>>almost universal in France.
>>>As opposed to perhaps the standard level of French (or any other
>>>second language) in most American students?
>>Never mind "sub-standard" in second languages - what about
>>the level of ENGLISH in most American students? I think
>>they no longer allow college professors to grade for
>>spelling and grammar when marking students' work, because it
>>would lower the grade averages considerably.
> Well, unlike other languages, English is defined by usage. The correct
> version is what's understandable to all. I sure don't hear the English
> piping up to say there's a correct version of it.
Really? There certainly were rules when I was in school!
(Someone - Carole, I think - mentioned "diagramming"
sentences, which I also remember from grammar school.) Poor
grammar may not prevent one being understood, but that does
not make it "correct" it only makes a native-born speaker
sound ignorant and uneducated. (Sadly, there are areas of
the U.S. where that is considered desireable.)
From: EvelynVogtGamble(Divamanque) on 15 Jul 2006 14:06
David Horne, _the_ chancellor of the duchy of besses o' th'
prestwich tesco 24h offy wrote:
> Dave Frightens Me <deepfreudmoors(a)eITmISaACTUALLYiREAL!l.nu> wrote:
>>On Fri, 14 Jul 2006 09:12:14 -0700, "EvelynVogtGamble(Divamanque)"
>>>Never mind "sub-standard" in second languages - what about
>>>the level of ENGLISH in most American students? I think
>>>they no longer allow college professors to grade for
>>>spelling and grammar when marking students' work, because it
>>>would lower the grade averages considerably.
>>Well, unlike other languages, English is defined by usage. The correct
>>version is what's understandable to all. I sure don't hear the English
>>piping up to say there's a correct version of it.
> I think Evelyn's trying to be the best old fogey in the newsgroup. I
> work with kids a lot, and I really don't get all this "standards are
> slipping" nonsense.
But do you work with American kids in an American public
school system? (I thought you were in the UK.)
From: EvelynVogtGamble(Divamanque) on 15 Jul 2006 14:12
> EvelynVogtGamble(Divamanque) writes:
>>Not if you have a healthy immune system!
> That's not how the immune system works. Your immune system is
> virtually helpless against certain infectious agents that it has never
> encountered before, including cold viruses. No matter how strong your
> immune system is, it will not resist infection by an unfamiliar cold
Define "resist" - a slight sore throat for half a day when a
healthy immune system encounters a new virus is not quite
the same as being bed-ridden for a week when an unhealthy
system encounters the same virus.
From: jeremyrh.geo on 15 Jul 2006 14:30
> Stanislas de Kertanguy writes:
> > But if you read the opening sentences, you see the word "Hellade". The
> > context is immediately set up : the poem is about Greece. The wonders
> > of ancient Greece are described in the simple past tense, so obviously
> > René Char sets himself into modern Greece.
> > Then you read "une raison étrangère tente de châtier sa perfection".
> > The "raison étrangère" refers both to the Nazis and the English
> > occupation forces.
> > It's not hard then to figure out that the poem is an hymn to Greek
> > national uprising after WWII !
> The poem means nothing to me.
> > Don't underestimate yourself !
> Poetry, as I have explained, depends upon a commonality of rules and
> assumptions between author and reader. I have virtually nothing in
> common with poets, and so I do not understand what they write.
> It's rather like a vandal spray-painting a swastika on a wall.
Silly Mixi - he reminds me of a child farting, or shouting a rude word,
and then running away to hide while he watches how the adults respond.
From: EvelynVogtGamble(Divamanque) on 15 Jul 2006 14:35
Karen Selwyn wrote:
> Grammar example:
> Growing up, I was taught to form a posessive out of a word that ends in
> an "s" by adding only an apostrophe after the "s." Now, literate
> publications like the WASHINGTON POST, CHICAGO SUN TIMES, and LA TIMES
> routinely form posessives by adding "'s" even to words ending in "s."
In Minnesota schools, we were taught that a simple
apostrophe after the "s" was only for plural nouns ending in
"s" - singular nouns ending in "s" still received "'s" at
the end. So "Robles's" (and "Jones's") would agree with
what we were taught. (Only of you were speaking of more
than one Jones would it be Jones', since the singular and
plura of the name was the same, then). However, in modern
usage we would refer to the Jones family as "the Joneses",
so the plural possessive becomes "Joneses'"
(Now when you come to "it's" as a contraction for "it is"
and "its" as a possessive, even those of us who know better
tend to become confused.)