Connections: How language and grammar change over time

Feb 2, 2018

We know that language evolves over time, but recent research shows that grammar actually change more quickly than language. What's acceptable to you when it comes to changes in standards? Does it bother you when you see a text message without punctuation? What about how grammar is used on social media? Maybe you're a member of the Grammar Police, maybe you think all change is good, or maybe you fall somewhere in the middle. Where do we draw the line?

Our panel discuss that question, and the evolution of grammar and language. Our guests:

  • Maya Abtahian, assistant professor of linguistics at the University of Rochester
  • Sheila Byrne, Advanced Placement English teacher at Webster Thomas High School 
  • Banke Awopetu, local author and poet  
  • Veronica Volk, reporter and producer for WXXI News who studied media theory at Fordham University, and WXXI News’ resident translator of internet slang