Written and Spoken English Language Essay

726 Words Jan 19th, 2009 3 Pages
Written and Spoken English Language


The English language consists both of written and spoken features. Until recently, items and structures most typically found in spoken language have not been fully described. Most grammars of English have had a bias towards the written language.
They are many differences between spoken and written English. Text A and B show written and spoken versions of an account of a days activities.
Text A is a written account of these activities, while Text B is a transcript of the spoken account.

The major differences between spoken and written English are, sentences in the written sense for example units beginning with capital letters, consisting of at least one main clause and ending in a full stop are
…show more content…
Examples of this can be found in Text B, here she mentions ‘..started with er the getting my dinners on (3.0) er was pretty straightforward then..’
Here we know what the speaker is talking about, however if this was written text then the opening ‘was pretty straightforward’ makes no sense to the reader.
Another major distinction between spoken English and written English is the omission or slurring of syllables in the spoken language, this is called Elision.
Words like ‘going to’ are slurred to ‘gonna’ and ‘want to be’ to ‘wannabe’ this is very common in speech as this is deliberately done to elide the sounds of the words for accent, regional dialect ect. The use of contracted forms are never used in the standard written English, examples of elision cannot be found in Text B as the speaker seems rarely do this.

Written English is a complicated formation of manly grammar. In Text A, the written account of the speakers activities, she uses very little grammar; with no clauses, pauses for breath, or barely any use of punctuation. The paragraph is very basic, while the sentence structure and depth is kept simple.
There could be many reasons for this, the speaker maybe illiterate with very little knowledge, or…