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Accidence Will Happen: The Non-Pedantic Guide to English Usage [Hardcover]

Oliver Kamm

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This title will be released on August 28, 2014.
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Book Description

28 Aug 2014
Are standards of English alright - or should that be all right? To knowingly split an infinitive or not to? And what about ending a sentence with preposition, or for that matter beginning one with 'and'? We learn language by instinct, but good English, we are told, requires rules. Every generation believes that standards of English are deteriorating. Yet people carry on speaking, writing and understanding language, and usage changes and adapts. There are many possible ways of expressing yourself fluently, grammatically and idiomatically. Chaucer, Shakespeare, Jane Austen and Charles Dickens frequently used constructions that breach many people's notion of correct English. From splitting infinitives to dangling prepositions, this erudite, entertaining and deeply reassuring guide demonstrates that many of the so-called rules of good style are little more than folklore mixed with prejudice and can be cheerfully disregarded. Oliver Kamm explains why the pedants are wrong, why the much-lamented 'good grammar' that ceased to be taught to school children in the 1960s should not be brought back, and why to deliberately split an infinitive, in the right context, is perfectly alright. This is a book for anyone who cares about language and how it is used. With authoritative advice on the linguistic conundrums that we all face, ACCIDENCE WILL HAPPEN will become an indispensable companion for readers, writers and users of modern English.

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Product Description

Book Description

A witty, authoritative and sometimes provocative guide to the use and abuse of the English language.

About the Author

Oliver Kamm is a leader writer and columnist for The Times. He joined the newspaper in 2008. He writes two weekly signed columns: "The Pedant", on language, which is published every Saturday; and a Notebook mainly on ideas, which is published every Tuesday. He is the newspaper's principal editorial writer on economics, international affairs and culture. He is a regular columnist for the Jewish Chronicle, and his writings have also appeared in the Guardian, the New York Times, the New Republic, Foreign Policy, the New Statesman, Prospect and many other publications. His book Anti-Totalitarianism, on foreign policy, was published in 2005 ("a fizzily pugnacious, stylish essay" - Guardian; "an impassioned, fluent and acerbic essay" - New Statesman). He is a regular interviewee on many high-profile television and radio programmes. Before becoming a writer and columnist, Kamm worked for 20 years in the City. He served as Head of Strategic Research for Commerzbank Securities and European Equity Strategist for HSBC Securities, and was co-founder of WMG Advisors LLP, an asset management and advisory company. He began his career at the Bank of England. He studied at the universities of Oxford and London. @OliverKamm

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