Slanguage 102: Slang On!!

January 22, 2009

SLANGUAGE: (slang-ooage) communication mainly comprised of colloquialisms and street or informal stripped down speech; decomposition

This freewrite blog is an excuse for me to enter a new word into your vocabulary (blogcabulary?-ok maybe that’s pushing it). I devised the two hybrid words: blargue & slanguage. Let’s talk about them…

Slanguage is a word I’ve used here many times before. It is useful in communicating a style of communication. There are times when people use slanguage to communicate and it may be mistaken for poor speech and grammar. This is a BIG MISTAKE. Nearly all my friends are college educated, professional people who engage the use of slanguage on a daily basis.

Slanguage is often more useful and valuable than conventional language because it helps to convey and denote geography, attitude, culture, and swagger or self image. I warn, DO NOT SQUELCH others from using this form of expression. I also encourage all people to further develop their own personalized slanguage. This will help define a people and give diversity to all.

Slanguage often reminds me of my hearing impaired friends. Often times, families with hearing impaired ones develop shorthand signs. This is done to communicate quicker, be more to the point, and to individualize their language. One of my friends calls this “home SL” or home sign language. For example she may shorten or abbreviate the movements for “restroom”, “grandfather”, or any number of words. If she were to sign with her interpreter or other hearing impaired people they may not readily understand what she was signing, but her mother or siblings do. Therefore, she of course would use the more traditional signs with anyone not at home.

Develop the slanguage of your home, your family, your friends, your community, and your hood. Slang on!

THE OTHER SIDE OF THE GAME

I would be remiss if I didn’t note that there is a time and place to use all manners of speech. Though I would discourage others to squelch the use of slanguage, there are obviously times when it would be inappropriate. Such as speaking to elders, (some) authority figures, work place, interviews, etc. I advocate the development of slang language but not all slang words/terms.

Is there significant difference between the terms “language” and “slanguage”? Do you think this is a valuable word? Will you adopt this term into your vocabulary? What terms have you developed?

I love language and that it develops every day. I enjoy examining culture, vernacular, colloquialisms, and slang. I sign (ASL), speak French, English, and have been working on Spanish. I began learning foreign languages at 7, took a 5 year hiatus, and resumed at 12. I only wish I had been introduced to foreign language at a younger age.

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