Summarise the main points of your chosen reading and evaluate, with reference to other material in the module you have engaged with to date, the extent to which it helps you understand how to identify creativity in everyday language.
In literary terms creativity is the use and manipulation of language. It exists in a variety of literary and communication practices. Noam Chomsky refers to creativity as being ‘a speaker/listeners ability to produce or understand a (potentially) infinite number of sentences they have not encountered’ (as cited in Swan 2006). Traditionally language play was considered to be the use of words and language that were associated with poets and novelist who manipulated there words to ensure it had an impact on their readers. In this evaluation I will be examining some of the explanations Cook and other sociolinguists offer to show how language play is an everyday occurrence.
Why Play with Language?
In Guy Cook’s reading ‘Why Play With Language’? He gathers information from a variety of sources to explain why we do play with language not just as children but as adults too. Cook’s focus in this extract is mainly on spoken language rather than literary and his main argument is that we manipulate language to a far greater extent than just using it as a means of ‘getting something done’, whether that be locating a bison by the lake or following instructions in an email as he explains in his opening argument.
Cook highlights several features of language play that seem to be common characteristics of everyday language. One of these characteristics is repetition which occurs at all linguistic levels. In children’s language play Cook explains that children repeat the same stories, songs, jokes etc. over and over again. He draws on examples from rhymes that are made up and repetitive. Similar patterns of repetition are seen in adult language play as Cook points out but where children use repetitive language play quite.