The Importance of Punctuation Essay
As a matter of fact, punctuation plays a great role in contemporary society, though we seldom think about it or come across the data proving this thesis. Every day we read and write a number of periodicals, check mail, etc. Hence, we may not realize the whole point concerning punctuation significance. In the flow of time rules evolve and become not so strict as they used to be years ago and it seems, that modern life does not allow us to stop, make pauses and change the intonation in order to emphasize the importance of this or that sentence, idea, to separate various sentence parts or just stop in the right place to breathe in the air.
Punctuation allows us to avoid misunderstanding and render this or that meaning, express our attitude to the facts, opinions mentioned. Unfortunately, punctuation marks, such as hyphen, quotation marks, commas, semicolon, ellipsis, etc. are frequently neglected and this creates a serious problem in understanding not the essence, but the deep sense of information given. Punctuation marks are like signs, like indicators what should be underlined and what can be enumerated without special emphasis.
Punctuation is very powerful, if it is used in the right way, but if it is applied to indignantly, it may cause serious problems, inconveniences and make the sentence with wrong punctuation mark or its absence become even humorous for an attentive listener. That is why one should be careful with using punctuation marks and take precautions in order not to get into an inconvenient situation or even into trouble.
According to Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Language is a city to the building of which every human being brought a stone”. So the rules of modern punctuation are becoming more and more flexible, one will be right to state that people seldom use colon, exclamation mark, comma or ellipsis while writing letters, for instance, as they just do not care about thinking over what to put in and if the sense is transferred without any punctuation marks why they should spend time inserting them.
A lot of communities and grammar centers cooperate in favor of raising the awareness of a contemporary reader and Internet user of the significance of such punctuation marks, such trifles if you look at them at the first sight. It is necessary to point out that the laws of punctuation usage change according to the demands of the fast-moving society and the rules are simplified in the course of time, but nevertheless they deserve special emphasis and analysis. Thinking over not only an abstract situation concerning this marks in various texts, but also considering our own attitude towards this problem is especially actual on the eve of the National Punctuation Day, which is celebrated in September, 24 this day was founded in 2004 and it is a young tradition to hold meetings in honor of punctuation and organize various programs and competitions, proving that there are and there should be pupils and students who are good at punctuation peculiarities. It will surely help pupils to comprehend the fact that the importance of punctuation is hard to be exaggerated and is worth particular attention, should be studied as thoroughly as any other aspect of grammar. Punctuation should be basically learned at school, because may be, a contemporary person should not be blamed for the lack of punctuation marks in writing or printing. People hardly ever give heed to such minor details as punctuation marks and it may not be their fault. Perhaps, the world started moving a little bit faster and if they stop and divert they may fall behind and it would be difficult for them to catch up with others who are quick and nimble, do all the assignments in time without any stoppage. Or perchance those tales about quickly moving world are just a lame excuse for conscience’ sake.
It may seem that lack of a comma or exclamation mark will pass unnoticed, but sometimes commas can change the sense of the whole sentence and, what is more, reading or speech without pausing does not allow the one to catch the breath, speech flow becomes monotonous and tedious and, to make matters worse, speech without pausing is not so good for comprehension as a person who reads a paragraph is not sure where to stop for his listener to gain a better insight. It is not so difficult to stop for a while and think, if a punctuation mark is needed here or there to make an abstract expressive and perceptible.
One should try to preserve punctuation marks as far as it is possible, the indignant attitude towards this problem must not be approved of in any case, he should attempt to create better environment for punctuation marks, starting with oneself, using them where necessary. Language contains treasures of world culture with all its golden rules and important aspects. It has already been proved that there are no minor details and trifles when it touches upon language as a living organism and a system formed by the words that the language owns.
It is common knowledge that language is a system, and as a system it has to be carefully and thoroughly studied, everything in it has to be in harmony, in continuous interaction of all the elements of the language. Its grammar, and punctuation in particular, is an essential part of the language, and it can not exist and function to the full without it, that is why one is to use them widely while printing or writing.
As Rosenstock Huessy keenly noticed, “Grammar and logic free language from being at the mercy of the tone of voice. Grammar protects us against misunderstanding the sound of an uttered name; logic protects us against what we say have double meaning”. Hence, right and suitable usage of punctuation will make us free from hesitating if we are rightly understood by the listeners, and if we follow the rules of punctuation in our daily correspondence writing and documents preparation, we will surely gain success.