Date: Mon, 10 Nov 1997 13:52:12 -0500

From: Jim Crotty Monkmag[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]AOL.COM

Subject: Re: one as a pronoun?

In a message dated 11/10/97 8:51:19 AM, you wrote:

I was surprised that no-one suggested:

When you read J. D. Salinger, you are overcome by sadness.

Although it may be considered too non-standard for many here, it is

increasingly acceptable in Britain.

The use of "one" marks you as being emphatically middle class and above

(both in speech and writing) and is to be avoided if you don't want to

sound snotty. When I was at university in Britain, the very few who used

"one" as a pronoun were held up to ridicule. Maybe Jim Crotty's friends at

the University of Sussex were from a narrow and elevated social group.

Actually, the Sussex kids were largely spoiled radical chic who tended to

hang out at the campus pub debating the merits of anarcho-syndicalism.

Narrow? Yes. Elevated? Probably in their own minds. The few friends of my age

at Sussex probably didn't use "one" much. Some of my older, more fuddy-duddy

acquaintances probably did. However, I've heard it used by all sorts of Brits

from all sorts of backgrounds coming over to "the States." Maybe it's a

kneejerk reflex when Brits encounter the informal American tongue. I've also

heard it a lot on BBC broadcasts. Maybe just another example of a snob (sans

nobilite) trying to emulate nobility?

Jim Crotty

How To Talk American...yup