What is formal language? Spoken and Written Functions to provide: Information, instruction, persuasion, entertainment, ceremony/rituals Artificial means of communication: movement into Plain English. Power to include, exclude, intimidate or obfuscate: ie jargon, industry specific terminology. The assumption that the speaker using formal language whether written or spoken is placed with a level of importance.
Formal language domains Within the functions we discussed, i.e. Information, instruction, persuasion, entertainment and ceremony, domains of formal language exist. A domain is simply the format it takes. i.e. political speech, cooking instructions,. Some domains provide an impact on society. This can be from simply providing a sense or morality, unity or range to providing a means of intimidation. Complete the table
Formal Language a historical journey Formal language has changed dramatically over the centuries as has its function and purpose. During the period in which monarchies ruled the world and conquered nations, formal language was used both verbally and non verbally to signify wealth, power and nobility. Essentially it instilled hierarchy within society and widened the gap between the classes. Ie Formal Language was reserved for the higher class or society and some bourgeois factions. The majority of the population, the peasants used a form of informal street language. Furthermore they were illiterate. This gave written language the power to instil the ideas of the nobility and the church, providing power to the minority.
Plain English Movement 1970s the Plain English Movement came about. This attempted to address the inequalities in our society that were fostered through language. The movement essentially made language that was complex in nature and existed within legal, government, banking and insurance institutions more accessible. This was done by suggesting a simplistic discourse able to be understood by the masses. It also bridged the divide between cultures, ethnicities, religions, genders, sexual orientation, disability etc by introducing the term we know as Political Correctness (PC). Promotion of social equality, democracy and solidarity.
Holiday Homework Read Pages 84-96 of the textbook. Read the examples “Queen Elizabeth’s Christmas Speech 1952”, “Queen Elizabeth’s Christmas Speech 2002’. Using dot points note the difference in the language use. Highlight any areas you believe the language used has a larger more overarching purpose. Have a think about how you would like to present your folio. HAVE FUN AND EAT LOTS OF CHOCOLATE!