Well, I’m very Fowlerian in my turn of mind, but the big change I’ve added to the literature on English usage is an overlay of empiricism — that is, I’ve placed a greater emphasis on how the language is actually used. Fowler, Partridge, Bernstein, and Follett had to guess about what they thought was the predominant usage for a given linguistic problem. But I’m able to use big data to buttress the judgments — and to really tie linguistic prescriptions to how edited English actually appears in print. So that’s something new in English usage.
Friday, July 14, 2017
… A Guardian of Good Usage and Grammar - Los Angeles Review of Books. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)