GCSE assessment October 2012 day 2


The English language is an enormous, flowing language, with all sorts of creative aspects and devices. Creativity in the English language is evident through use of text speech, occurring due to the lack of paralinguistic features in addition to the mere selection of the 136 available characters, and shown by the nuances and idioms of spoken language.


In text speech, via the use of a meagre emoticon, we can instantly add facial expression to the otherwise featurelessness of text speech. The paralinguistic device of expression is extremely important in all forms of communication, adding emotion and depth to a statement. However, an emoticon can also be used to show sarcasm, a feature of language usually only available by use of nuances, as the only method of detecting sarcasm is via tone, pitch and body language. Emoticons are exceptionally creative as they make up for the lack of paralinguistic features to show facial expression only by using a few simple symbols. An example of an emoticon in use is [from the text conversation between Mark and Alex] “nm im at skl :’( “. The use of the emoticon “ :’( “ shows the reader that the speaker, or ‘texter’ in this case, is unhappy about what they are doing.

Furthermore, this statement brings use to our next point; abbreviations. Abbreviations and acronyms are used to crop down words, or to take the first letter of each word in a phrase, or idiom, to create a new word, normally only a few letters long.  These phrases, such as “nm“ (meaning ‘Not Much’) ,as shown by the previous example, are used in every day text speech, and are broadly recognised. These phrases are created due to the fact that in texting, speed and brevity are very important. This is because it is difficult to type extended messages into a phones small keypad; these phrases have developed to make it less complicated to communicate with speed. This is creative as the first letters of each word is taken, and put together to make a new word, cutting it down as almost everything in texting revolves around brevity.


In spoken language, creativity is shown by prosodic features. These small components, such as tone, pitch and rhythm can define a statement, or completely change its meaning. A good example of prosodic features in use is in sarcasm. For instance, a common sarcastic saying is “that’s really helpful.” To show that they were being sarcastic, a speaker would say the phrase in a low tone, speak slower and put particular emphasis on the ‘really’. Sarcasm is an extremely good example of how malleable spoken language can be; saying one thing but meaning quite the opposite.

In addition to this, slang shows the inventiveness of spoken language. Slang words such as “fam” and “bruv” are used by groups of people to show that they belong, or are part of a certain group, and sometimes are used to create an impression. In this case, “fam” and “bruv are used by people in the same group to show belonging, and to fit in. In this sense, spoken language is extremely creative and inventive, in that groups of people make up their own words, phrases and idioms almost daily, that may not make sense in context to normal spoken language, but make perfect sense to people of the same group.


Spoken and text language are becoming interchangeable, as slang in spoken language is being used in text-based conversation. On the other hand, abbreviations and acronyms are becoming commonly used in everyday language, particularly by the younger generations. For instance, the acronym “LOL“(meaning laugh out loud), is said by many people, taking place of laughter. However, this contradicts the purpose LOL, as the person saying it is using it instead of laughing out loud, turning it into an almost sarcastic expression. Additionally, the acronym LOL has different meanings, depending on which generation you are from. The younger generation would define LOL as meaning ‘Laugh Out Loud’, from text based communication, taking place of laughter, factor of spoken language that is missing from text conversations. However, LOL would mean ‘Lots of Love’ or ‘Lots of Luck’ to older generations, sourcing from written letters. This is a hugely significant feature of creativity, as spoken language can be interchangeable with text language. Moreover, acronyms having different meanings depending on age, is a huge sign of the development in both spoken and text based language as it shows how the creativity in language has developed and changed over time, and how


Another immensely significant feature of creativity in spoken language is its change across the globe. In different countries across the world, people create their own dialects and accents, entirely by themselves. For instance, people originating from the area of Australia and New Zealand have a rising intonation towards the end of their sentences. This feature of their dialect is found in the majority of the population, happening because people like to fit in, to be accepted, into their surroundings, so their subconscious would adapt to impersonate the speech patterns of the people around them to fit in, linking back to slang. This is extremely creative as people sculpt spoken language

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