A couple of months ago I received a really funny comment on a blog post called Only YOU Can Decide When You’ve Become Fluent!, and here’s what Jacque said:
Being fluent means one can construct a subjected indirect object locative double passive in the past habitual progressive, and following it with a wh-fronted cleft with the subject moved to object position along with an optional topicalization and postmodified adjective restricting the sentence focus, AND having no idea what the heck the above means!
Personally I think it’s a BRILLIANT representation of everything that’s wrong with the traditional English studies and how it’s affected most English students’ thinking!
Fluency = Simple Ability to Speak!
Contrary to what many people believe, fluency in English doesn’t require grammar perfection.
As a matter of fact, you don’t even have to know what a Conditional Sentence Type 3 is, for example, in order to use it in your speech – no more than you have to know what your leg muscles are called in order to be able to run and use them.
Similarly, you don’t have to know what “subjected indirect object locative double passive” is – you just have to able to maintain normal English conversations with people.
Fluency ≠ Familiarity with Grammar Terms
And even if there is such a thing as “subjected indirect object locative double passive” (believe me – I couldn’t care less if there is!), true fluency would indeed mean that you’d be able to use it without even realizing you do it.
Because analyzing English grammar constructs and being able to name them only puts an enormous pressure onto your brain and the resulting information overload can actually prevent you from speaking fluently.
So, can you speak with wh-fronted cleft?
And can you provide some examples of the past habitual progressive for me please?
I’d be really glad to receive your comments! 😉
P.S. Are you serious about your spoken English improvement? Check out my English Harmony System HERE!