Tuesday, April 13, 2010

A Grammatical Conundrum

I'm slightly more sensitive to syntactical blunders than others due to my previous employment as an English teacher, however the prevalence nowadays to bypass capitalization, omit commas, and completely disregard apostrophes is a disgraceful trend that currently affects society's youth. The written word is paramount in most professions at present, not just those involved directly in grammatical usage: journalism, editing, or teaching. When children (and even the more mature among us) are repeatedly exposed to writing that is of poor quality, mistakes are duplicated. 

Perhaps it is a bit Orwellian for me to say this, but is the English language, as we know it, becoming obsolete?

Now, to be clear, I completely understand the use of non-standard usage when tweeting, on social networking sites, and even while blogging (so you can stop looking for my errors)- the computer allows for different grammatical rules. Despite this, when writing a book the customary rules of grammar should apply.

I mention this vexation of mine, perhaps a little irately, because I have noticed that more and more cookbooks are being published abounding with errors in syntax and structure. The famous chefs of the world seem to have a new text out monthly- but are they edited ruthlessly? I think not.

So what is the answer? Leaf through before you buy. Glance at the introduction, the stories pertaining to the various dishes. Chances are, if you notice an error during this brief glimpse, there will be several throughout the book, and you don't want your children exposed to such inaccuracies, or said blunders will go on, and on, and on...


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