Robert Lane Greene, author of You Are What You Speak: Grammar Grouches, Language Laws and the Power of Words, reveals 10 myths about language.
1. In English, there are always clear rules; violate them and you’re wrong.
Who says? English has no committee that sets the rules; it never has. (France does, by contrast. More on them below.) The “rules” are frequently laid down in books intended to be authoritative; such books have often perpetuated non-rules that have been violated by great writers and speakers throughout history. The test of whether a rule is a Rule is not whether your English teacher told you so. It’s whether the body of speakers and writers observe it, establishing it as the de facto spoken and written standard by their use of English, not by their proclamations about rules.