re: Foreign languages and the BBC. Little Richardjohn - 545th post - 31 Dec 2004 13:10
What the BBC is definitely guilty of is the emasculation of English.
The insistence on impartiality has led to the situation where people say: "He is very suitably attired" when they mean "he's wearing a smart suit" - as Moira Stewart did in her family history programme today..
"suitably attired" is an objective statement. It doesn't judge. It has no emotion. And of course, in the British class structure, emotion is the enemy of both double-entry book-keeping and 'ethnic cleansing'. And so must be suppressed at every opportunity.
So instead of saying what you mean, you say something which will keep you out of trouble. Which is a form of mind-control, when you think about it.
And if it was just people like the Fragrant Moira, it wouldn't matter so much. But you hear teenagers doing it, and find yourself doing it yourself...
And that has to be largely down to sixty years of thrice daily doses of Neutral BBCspeak. Sorry Auntie, but as the broadest distributor of English, you're bang to rights on this one. Maybe the licence fee structure is to blame... [reply] [Complain about this post]
re: Foreign languages and the BBC. Trevor Adcock - 125th post - 31 Dec 2004 15:10
A great deal of this English Language misuse would be avoided if only people tried to learn a foreign language. The very act of struggling with the ways another language works shows you how your own first language works and I would like to see the BBC insisting on its reporters learning two completely different second languages. [reply] [Complain about this post]
re: Foreign languages and the BBC. Little Richardjohn - 550th post - 31 Dec 2004 15:39
I'm not so sure if it's just the old public school mastery of structure.
People will stop abusing the language when they start thinking for themselves and not parroting some hatelist from the nearest shock-jock or tabloid columnist.
When they start trying to visualize what they want to say instead of reaching for the nearest cliche.
And finally, when they actually feel and mean what they say. That way it will be their own personality which produces the words and not some media surrogate.