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Slang: a Distinguishing Language Essay

  • Submitted by: jalildal
  • on November 13, 2012
  • Category: Social Issues
  • Length: 1,585 words

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Below is an essay on "Slang: a Distinguishing Language" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

A Distinguishing Language

The recent increase of slang among adolescents and adults has caused many researches to question what is causing this epidemic. In today’s fast-paced world, slang has become one of the biggest influential and effective factors that define a culture. Slang has the ability to identify, classify and separate social groups, classes and even countries. Two examples of small subunits of social groups are ‘jocks’ and ‘nerds.’ Moreover, two examples of social classes include high and low class. Both the former and latter differ in their use of slang expressions. Additionally, different cultures have different slang terms. This is especially true for Anglophone and Francophone societies where slang is the most effective way of communication. Furthermore, the use of slang can differ drastically between countries. Besides the obvious accent differences, the slang words themselves differ from each other and have diverse meanings. Whether from a different country, class or social group, the use of slang terms has the ability to identify the group to which an individual belongs too.
The term slang is not an easy word to define. C.O.D. defines slang as “words and phrases in common colloquial use, but generally considered in some or all of their senses to be outside the Standard English” (Brook, 1974). This definition brings attention to two important aspects of slang: first that slang sprung from the spoken and not written language and second, it is concerned with expressions and vocabulary. Slang has been around for many decades and “is as old as human speech” (Green, 2003). Yet this colloquial language is usually taken for granted and considered “some kind of adolescent disease that everyone eventually grows out of” (Burridge, 2004).   However just the opposite seems to be true. Not only are slang terms used by all age groups, slang is as an important part of all cultures and countries, and through the use of slang expressions, communication between...

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