The important role of grammar in learning the English language

Oct 4, 2019English and Study Tips, Smart Brains Spotlight

The important role of grammar in learning the English language

The important role of grammar in learning the English language

Dr David Minger

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The important role of grammar in learning the English language Smart Brains Spotlight


Fix your English Grammar

The important role of grammar in learning the English language

 

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Why does English have a lot of complex grammar rules compared to other languages? The important role of grammar in learning the English language. As explained by Dr David “In linguistics, grammar is not the rules you read in a book, but the rules you activate in your brain when you learn a language.”

 

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The important role of grammar in learning the English language

The important role of grammar in learning the English language

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Why does English have a lot of complex grammar rules compared to other languages?

The important role of grammar in learning the English language

Dr David Minger

Fix your English Grammar

The important role of grammar in learning the English language How can I become fluent in English?

The important role of grammar in learning the English language

The important role of grammar in learning the English language

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The important role of grammar in learning the English language

The important role of grammar in learning the English language

The important role of grammar in learning the English language

 

  Answer by Dr David Minger, ( BA, MA Linguistics, PhD Education, love science, Oregon State University ). All credit goes to Dr David Minger, Thank you!

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Fix your English GrammarThe important role of grammar in learning the English language

 
 

From a linguistics point of view: All languages are rule-driven, and all natural languages have evolved over time, with changes that have led to various exceptions and irregularities.

 

The important role of grammar in learning the English language  In linguistics, grammar is not the rules you read in a book, but the rules you activate in your brain when you learn a language. The typical speaker is actually unconscious of those grammatical rules.

 

The important role of grammar in learning the English language   For example, if you are a native speaker of English, have you considered (become consciously aware) that “th” is uniformly voiced in grammatical words (e.g., “these, this, though, the, then, thy, those, that,” etc.) whereas non-grammatical words starting with “th” are voiceless (e.g., “think, theory, theater, thank,” etc.)? Or that you pronounce the “l” quite differently when it starts a word (e.g., the “bright” “l” of “like, Luke, lend,” etc.) versus the “dark” “l” that ends words (e.g., “ball, all, fell, mall,” etc.). And so on. If you are not consciously aware of those “rules” you nonetheless absorbed them as a native speaker. Same is true of other languages.

 

 

Exceptions

 

Now, that’s not to say that English doesn’t have lots of exceptions. It does. It’s just to say that all languages face that to one extent or another.

 

In fact, the language that I can think of that has no (or nearly no) exceptions would be the artificial language Esperanto.

 

But even there, let’s say Esperanto became a first language of the whole human race. It would eventually form divergent dialects and an array of exceptions after a period of decades or centuries.

 

 

Rule Complexity

 

Is English really more complex? The case marking of say Russian is far more complex than that of English. The intonation patterns of English are simpler than say Cantonese Chinese with its range of phonemic tones. The syntax of English is simpler than that of complex sentences in say German. The verbal tense systems of some Romance languages, like Spanish, are more complex than English (English forms tenses with combinations of words like “will, had, have,” etc., whereas Spanish inflects the verb roots themselves). Or take the Semitic languages, at least some of which have entirely different verb and object forms depending on the sex of the speaker and the sex of the person being referred to (for example, a man saying, in Hebrew, “I love you” would use different forms of both “love” and “you” than would a woman saying the same thing).

 

The important role of grammar in learning the English language   So, from my view, having studied a number of language and taught languages, I don’t think English is more complex grammatically in any “global” sense that affects all parts of the language.

 

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Reference: Dr David Minger, “Why does English have a lot of complex grammar rules compared to other languages?originally appeared on Quora, the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world.
Fix your English Grammar

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