We use language to communicate between ourselves. But what are the other functions of language? A particular tongue has three primary functions – to direct, inform, and express.
Informative language is the language we use for the purpose of analysis, reports, arguments and so on. Statements form the major portion of informative language.
Expressive language is the language used to express our feelings and emotions. It is the language used to express our joy, sadness, anger, fear and the like. Although, expressive language is not informative – it adds depth to our communication. You can be said to be using expressive language when you are swearing or cheering.
Directive language is generally employed by authority and used to establish social order. It lays out normative behavior that the public is expected to adhere by.
Language is dynamic and can be used in a combination of all of the above-discussed functions. For eg: You could say “I’m thirsty”. Such a statement would be expressive, informative and directive – all at the same time. Your sentence would state that you would like some water and haven’t been able to avail any. It would also be an implied request conveyed to another to bring you water.