According to the encyclopedia a slang word can be described as informal or non-standard phrases which are created and used in subcultures within a specific society. Slang often means that the person who is using the slang is familiar with the listener’s group or sub group. Slang has no societal limitations as such because it can be used or exists in all cultures and in all parts of society, even in languages. Slang expressions are created in almost the same way as standard speech. The phrases which are used as slang may be new words all together or existing words which take up new meaning, words can also be abbreviated or small meanings of words can also become generalized. However there is always a condition to the survival of a new slang word or phrase, that is, it must be adopted by everyone who uses slang. It is through slang that a language is changed or renewed over the years.
Now slang is not just any thing that is new or well known in language. Slang is sometimes confused for different dialects or catch phrases. For example the catch phrase “Hasta la vista baby” is not a slang word. Jargon that is the technical language with regard to a specialized field is also wrongly confused for slang at times. Slogans, graffiti, special vocabulary which is used by a specific group, colloquialism and solecism are also not slang or used as slang.
Most people desire uniqueness, hence slang has existed as long as language itself. There are many reasons why people use slang. Most of the time foreign words and some regional variations of the language become a part of the standard language. Slang has also been used to rebel against the government, those who lack political power are also known as using slang, it is a great way to rebel. However it is also true that slang has known to exist even in content times. Slang is basically created by individuals and used depending upon its applicability.
In the modern times American slang has been created and modified by many diverse cultures and also the emergence and advancement of technology. This immense usage of technology has left the American society with many types and kinds of slang. The many types of slang include Street/Drug Slang and even African – American slang.
Slang was once considered a low form of communication, where nowadays many consider slang as an intelligent and perceptive innovation to the plain standardized language. It is true that even Shakespeare at time used slang. However the use of slang is condoned by many people as it makes the users appear poorly and it undermines the laws of the standard language as well. In 1989 according to the Oxford English Dictionary slang was defined as a special form of vocabulary which was used by people who had low character. In fact the first dictionaries were created because they wanted to protect the English language from the influence of slang.
There are many reasons that slang is used, slang is still here since before the medieval times and it will be here forever until language is going to be used. In fact language was created because of the immense use of slang language, people wanted to bring about some stability to the very frequently changing slang language and to do so they encouraged the Standard English language. In my opinion slang is a way to express yourself differently from the norm, you can express yourself using the English language, but by using slang or creating slang you create an expression which depicts yourself much better.