gets risen

Herbert Stahlke hstahlke at WORLDNET.ATT.NET
Sat Sep 6 01:42:38 UTC 2003


My intro grad linguistics class is regularly a mix of foreign and US
students, most of the foreign ones having degrees and experience in TESOL
abroad.  They are consistently more prescriptive than American students and
are frequently nonplussed at some of the issues that come up, for example,
in Bauer and Trudgill's Language Myths.  The debate between Trudgill and
Halpern on "infer" vs. "imply" puzzles them because they can't imagine an
issue arising about the use of these words.  Once it's explained, they're
still puzzled as to why teachers don't just insist on correct usage.

I don't think you're being too prescriptive.  You're recognizing the reality
that English
teaching faces globally, that English is taught strictly as one of the
standard variants and nothing else is even mentioned.  If another variant
comes up at all, it's by means of negative comparison.  While we can hope to
have some influence on schools in this country and in Britain, and projects
like Rebecca Wheeler's in Newport, VA, show considerable promise, I don't
think we'll have any impact at all on ESL and EFL teaching abroad.

As to "gets risen", it sounds something like an exception to one of
Kurylowicz's Laws of Analogy or one of Manczak's variations on them, that a
regularized form tends to be used in new constructions.  Neither K or M says
anything explicit about new lexical collocations, but it's in the spirit of
their generalizations.  We'd expect "raised" to replace "risen" with "get",
so "get risen" is odd.  It's probably worth a usage note in an ESL


> Just heard on CNN:
> ... gets risen ...
> (should have been) ... gets raised ....
> When, if ever, should rise~raise confusions be recognized in desk
> dictionaries of standard English?  Should such problems be noted in
> learner's (non-native speaker) dictionaries?
> Clearly, when native speakers in their sometimes "sloppy" use of the
> language may mislead "new" speakers of English.  Am I being too
> prescriptive?
> Regards,
> David
> barnhart at

barnhart at

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