Saturday, March 25, 2017

The Speak Good English Movement's new grammar book - PART 2

In this article, I will examine in greater detail one or two more of the many errors made in the new grammar book of Singapore's Speak Good English Movement (SGEM) called Grammar Rules. I will also perhaps take a peek into the thoughts of the writer or writers of this highly flawed grammar book. If you want to read PART 1 of this article, please click here.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Tense because of tenses.

In my previous post on the many errors in the new grammar book of the Speak Good English Movement, one Renfred Tay in a public Facebook posting objects to my use of the simple present tense 'give' in the first sentence below:

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

The Speak Good English Movement's new grammar book.

The Straits Times wrote yesterday about a new grammar book published by the Speak Good English Movement (SGEM) and I promptly obtained one for myself. Here it is:

Friday, March 17, 2017

TEDxNUS, mind your language!

I got a message this morning from Facebook about an event which will take place tomorrow and it was probably sent to me because a friend of mine will be attending it. That's how Facebook works. I clicked on the link and was led to the homepage of TEDxNUS.

I don't know much about the watered-down version TEDxNUS but I do know that TED hosts a lot of very interesting talks, some of which I have viewed with great delight on YouTube. Whatever the quality of TEDxNUS may be, the very short write-up on its home page is a bit of a letdown: TEDxNUS can't even get its language right.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Singapore's English Movement in error again.

Elsewhere in this blog, I have explained why I no longer read Singapore's Straits Times but this afternoon, a friend referred me to a letter written by Goh Eck Kheng, the Chairman of Singapore's Speak Good English Movement, which was published in the Straits Times on the Forum page on 13 February. I have furnished  irrefutable evidence in almost 100 blog posts why I can justly conclude that anything written by the Movement is bound to contain some language error but when my friend first brought the letter to my attention, I thought it was rather presumptuous of him to expect that there would be grammatical errors in such a short letter. Writing a grammatically correct letter should not be an impossible task for anyone who has been through some basic education in English. To oblige my friend, I thought I should just cast an eye on the first and last paragraphs of the letter and I would then tell him the letter was flawlessly grammatical. I could hardly believe my eyes as I read those two paragraphs!

You may click here for the full letter in the Straits Times website. It's really a very short letter with only 11 sentences and for reasons which are beyond even my wildest imagination, each paragraph has only one sentence.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Liberal Loonies Linguistically Trumped.

I've been told that it's very hard to find a single educated person in the US and you can walk the entire length and breadth of this massive country for months without encountering a single literate person but I'm sure that's a cruel exaggeration. But it is a fact that whenever a person exposes his lack of education on an internet platform, he is more likely to be American. Years ago, on an Internet forum, a few Americans made fun of me because I spelt 'spelt' that way. They were insistent that 'spelled' was the only correct spelling for the past and past participle of the verb and anything else was an error.

Friday, January 20, 2017

What the dickens!

Acceptance of multiculturalism in the 21st century has brought about a spirit of tolerance that sometimes leads to amusing results in the study of grammar. While grammarians in the early 20th century were free to dismiss as barbarous illiteracy what appears to us today to be no more than a minor syntactic inelegance, grammarians these days hum and haw when confronted with an obvious solecism and they do all they can to excuse the error as an acceptable variant when it clearly isn't. In the same spirit of pusillanimity, linguists these days are quick to remind their readers that the grammar they write is descriptivist and they turn their noses up at the works of grammarians of a previous generation which they label as 'prescriptivist'.