English is the most common language considered in almost all nations of the world; however it contains a rich range of words and phrases which vary with the geographical area or the people using it. These words and phrases do not appear in the English dictionary although some are widely used across the boundaries until they become accepted as part of the formal English language and they a times feature in the dictionary, for example, the use of the word "cool" to mean okay has become so common that it can be used to communicate in any formal context. Some of these words distort the existing words while others are completely invented and not related to any English word. Generally slang is ribald, shocking or humorous and is meant for improvement of speech or making it more casual and playful. The study below considers the use of slang language in some parts of Canada; its main purposes and value in the society.
Slang language in Canada
English is considered to be the mother tongue of the Canadians although other languages are considered for some occasions, for example, Scotch is used for sermons and American for conversations. Typically the type of English used in Canada has some elements of American and British in its archive and other distinctive of canadianisms which mostly begins as slang vocabularies used by some groups of people and in some places an influence of French. Some of the words and phrases used by the locals as the slang language are very unique compared to the ordinary English language while some others are either a modification or distortion of the ordinary English words and are related either in spelling or pronunciation. For example, garburator is used to mean a garbage unit placed under the kitchen sink; fir hall mean s a fire station, homo milk means homogenized milk or whole milk as referred to by the American English. These and other slang words and phrases are very common in the area that some of the people confuse it with the formal language (Coleman, p. 357).
According to the history and origin of most of the slang words and phrases, they began as a small group argot which is sometimes related with jargon. The people apply these words in their conversation and make it common to the rest of the societal members. Therefore the language diffuses from its small group of origin and spread across an entire region or community when the other people outside the group pick it up causing it to spread along a large geographical area. However, slang may remain isolated if the founder members are not willing to share it out to the members outside their group. For example, some illegal sectors in the society try to isolate from the rest of the society by the language that they use; this becomes successful if the members are mean to share their language thus none of the non members can understand the sector.
Why Slang exists
Slang language is considered for the fulfillment of two differing reasons depending on the point of view of the observers. Most of the words and phrases come up with various groups of people in efforts to set themselves apart or express their personalities in distinct and more individual ways thus blocking the public from discovering their secrets. Some other Slang words and phrases are open even from the word go for all the members of the society to learn because they are considered for development and enrichment of the language. It is considered as an experimental operator in the laboratory of linguistics because it brings about a new word and tests it worthiness in the local dictionary or abandons it.
When the word begins, it is used by a limited group of people who have something in common for example, the teenagers but with time it spreads to the others and later to a large population of people across a geographical area. Many of the words and phrases do not reach the popularity enough to be used like regular words thus they are sooner abandoned or limited only to the areas of origin. For example, some Slang words are started in New Market region but do not go beyond the boundaries of the region to used at least in the entire region of Ontario in Canada (Burke, p. 67-87)
These words are soon forgotten or rarely used by the communicators because of the pressure of the language used by majority of the people in Ontario. However some other words which are formed by the communicators in the area of New Market are well appreciated by the rest of the people thus spreading them to the entire region of Ontario and the whole of Canada. Although not considered to be formal or applicable in the formal context like education and nursing, Slang is a times considered in the formal professionals like in healthcare field for the purpose of handling various cases with the patients. This is because some of the patients especially the less literate may so much addicted or only used to the Slang language which is very common in their societies thus they may not be comfortable with the ordinary or the formal English language used in schools and hospitals (Connie, p. 5).
This language although not appreciated by various specialists or professionals in the English language is assumed to be of important to the residents or communicators in the local areas of Canada. This is importantly because of its ability to create an informal social context for the people to communicate freely and create identification for a certain group. Some of the sub-cultural groups are identified by the language that they use to communicate. These people make their languages more unique by coming up with as many different words and phrases as possible. Due to the pressure of globalization and competition in the market of the goods and services, the organizations are struggling hard to distinguish their operations from the others and block the competitors from copying them.
For example, the health care institutions sometimes use Slang language to refer to their services or to label their products like the medicines thus the other related organizations in the rest of the world may not be able to copy them may not be able to copy them by studying either their ingredients. There is need for each of the organization to have a unique way of operation which enables it to survive the stiff competition in the market place and formulate ways of securing their confidential information. Slang language is considered in the management and internal communication within the members thus the external environment may not understand what they mean (Sharma, p. 66).
Slang language is an informal form of communication through the use of words and phrases which are not formal and do not appear in the dictionary. Although globalization is adding pressure on everyone across the world to learn or use English as an official language various individuals or groups of people are still trying to maintain their identities by keeping differences in the languages that they use. This has brought about the formation of words or phrases which are either a distortion of the existing English words or invention of new words which may not be translated to other languages. This has made Slang language to be very common in world nations like Canada.