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BRITSPEAK March 23, 2005

Posted by wmmbb in Social Environment.

I am not always sure here expressions come from, whether from Britain or the US, nor do I care. Acording to Kevin Drum, one American has taken the trouble to study the matter, finding words and phrases of British origin being used to replace good American ones.

However, I do not think that the explanation should be attributed to globalization. That is too general. I think there is a cross movement of people and the interpenetration of media, for example films, newspapers and no doubt the internet. People picking up expressions happens all the time.

What is interesting, and not in itself original, is that there is resistance to what Kevin takes to call “Britspeak”. Usuage comes and goes. World wide English is infused with Yankspeak, and Britspeak, although often I am one who was not aware of its origin. My view is that once a phrase has gained common currency in World English it ceases to be merely an Americanism, or a Britishism, or for that matter, an Australianism.


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