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bear by san

March 2017



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bear by san

Louis Menand takes on Eats, Shoots and Leaves, and winds up with a wonderful essay on voice, artistic neurosis, and brilliance.

Oh yes.


To be honest, I had wondered if there was going to be a separate American edition or if the book would be considered an oddity of British punctuation rules.

As an American who taught for 19 years in the American system before transferring to the English educational system, I still roll my eyes as I see colleagues in the English department at my school capitalise 'science' and 'history' -- after all the years I taught students in the US not to do that. American history -- not American History. Algebra II but algebra. And here, I am told that 'insightful' is a horrid Americanism; I should not write that 'Mary makes insightful comments...'. Just last week, I was told that 'he hasn't put forth much effort' was a phrase unheard of in England.

Two countries, separated by their common language. And yes, I'm using British spelling on a full-time basis now; it helps me remember that I have to mark American spelling as wrong. I am amazed by the number of students in the UK who use American spellings -- color, neighbor, favorite etc. all the time.
I'm going to sound like a stalker here, but Ariel, is that you? Between the comment, the icon and your user profile, I have a funny feeling it is you. ;)
Yes. 'Tis I. Feel free to add me since most of my entries are friends only!

It's a small world after all! :)
Coolo, will do! So funny to run across you here. It is a small world indeed.
And a smaller internet!
'Tis indeed! :)
I am amazed by the number of students in the UK who use American spellings -- color, neighbor, favorite etc. all the time.

A lot of this can be laid at Bill Gate's door. Word defaults to US English, so unless it's been changed on installation, many people happily use the US spellchecker without realising it. I've just been marking stories submitted for an assignment on the creative writing course I tutor and four or five of the students appeared to have their word processor set wrong. (The stories are submitted electronically, so I'm opening up the actual file, not just looking at a printout.)

In my day job, I teach IT and one year I was teaching evening classes in a school where I found that -- yes, you guessed it! -- the spellchecker was set to US not UK.
The computers at school are set to the UK dictionary, but I'd bet anything you're correct in that the ones at their homes haven't been changed. :)

However, why do they use American spellings when they write longhand? I have to keep reminding them that I'm American and they're not. ;)
Thanks for the link. That was lovely.
Wow. That's one essay that needs to be re-read, pondered, and passed on. Thanks for the link.
Why do I have the sudden urge to brush up on my punctuation?
I liked it, too.

You really have an 'Oh yes' mood defined? LJ needs to add it.
Nah, I hacked the moods. *g* You go in through the update journal page, select a mood, AND type something in. *g*
Thanks for the pointer. Menand is an excellent writer. I loved American Studies.
It made my whole morning.
There's been a couple conversations about voice going on in various LJs, and that fits in perfectly.


(Thanks to matociquala for the link--enjoyed that very much!)
Here's one. Or, the one I can find easily.