LINGUIST List 11.2085

Sat Sep 30 2000

Books: Philosophy of Language, Sociolinguistics

Editor for this issue: Naomi Ogasawara <>

Links to the websites of all LINGUIST's supporting publishers are available at the end of this issue.


  1. Joyce Reid, New Horizons in the Study of Language and Mind, N.Chomsky
  2. Joyce Reid, Language Death, D.Crystal

Message 1: New Horizons in the Study of Language and Mind, N.Chomsky

Date: 28 Sep 2000 09:08:57 +0800
From: Joyce Reid <>
Subject: New Horizons in the Study of Language and Mind, N.Chomsky

New Horizons in the Study of Language and Mind

Noam Chomsky, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

"What is impressive about Chomsky's writing is not just its awesome
 breadth and remarkable scope, but that after half a century he still
 has the power to surprise: from the observation that human beings are
 not a natural kind to the importance of Japanese for the analysis of
 English; from the rejection of his celebrated invention 'deep
 structure' to the conjecture that language, despite its biological
 nature, may be close to perfection; from the tension between common
 sense and science to the implications of what we know about a brown
 house or a cup of tea. Everything combines to give a unique and
 compelling view of language and mind." -From the Foreword

"...this is a very important book; not just because a lot of what it
 saystrue, but also because Chomsky is a very important thinker."
 -Jerry Fodor, The Times Literary Supplement

This book is an outstanding contribution to the philosophical study of
language and mind, by one of the most influential thinkers of our
time. In a series of penetrating essays, Chomsky cuts through the
confusion and prejudice that has infected the study of language and
mind, bringing new solutions to traditional philosophical puzzles and
fresh perspectives on issues of general interest, ranging from the
mind-body problem to the unification of science. Using a range of
imaginative and deceptively simple linguistic analyses, Chomsky
defends the view that knowledge of language is internal to the human
mind. He argues that a proper study of language must deal with this
mental construct. According to Chomsky, therefore, human language is a
"biological object" and should be analyzed using the methodology of
the sciences. His examples and analyses come together in this book to
give a unique and compelling perspective on language and the mind.


Foreword by Neil Smith; 
1. New horizons in the study of language; 
2. Explaining language use; 
3. Language and interpretation:
 philosophical reflections and empirical inquiry; 
4. Naturalism and dualism in the study of language and mind; 
5. Language as a natural object; 
6. Language from an internalist perspective; 
7. Internalist explorations; 

2000/248 pp.
65147-6/Hb/List: $54.95 Disc.: $43.96
65822-5/Pb/List: $19.95 Disc.: $15.96

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Message 2: Language Death, D.Crystal

Date: 28 Sep 2000 16:13:26 +0800
From: Joyce Reid <>
Subject: Language Death, D.Crystal

Language Death

David Crystal

The rapid endangerment and death of many minority languages across the
world is a matter of widespread concern, not only among linguists and
anthropologists but among all interested in the issues of cultural
identity in an increasingly globalized culture. A leading commentator
and popular writer on language issues, David Crystal asks the
fundamental question, "Why is language death so important?", reviews
the reasons for the current crisis, and investigates what is being
done to reduce its impact. By some counts, only 600 of the 6,000 or
so languages in the world are "safe" from the threat of extinction.
By some reckonings, the world will, by the end of the twenty-first
century, be dominated by a small number of major languages. Language
Death provides a stimulating and accessible account of this crisis,
brimming with salutary and thought-provoking facts and figures about a
phenomenon which--like the large-scale destruction of the
environment--is both peculiarly modern and increasingly global. The
book contains not only intelligent argument, but moving descriptions
of the decline and demise of particular languages, and practical
advice for anyone interested in pursuing the subject further.

David Crystal has written extensively on language. An internationally
renowned writer, journal editor, lecturer, and broadcaster on language
matters, and formerly Professor of Linguistics at the University of
Reading, David Crystal lives with his family in Wales.


1. What is language death?; 
2. Why should we care?; 
3. Why do languages die?; 
4. Where do we begin?; 
5. What can be done?; 
List of organisations; 
Further reading; 
Index of languages; 
Subject index.

2000/208 pp.
65321-5/Hb/List: $19.95 Disc.: $15.96

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----------------- Major Supporters ----------------

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Multilingual Matters

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---------Other Supporting Publishers-------------

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Thursday, September 21, 2000
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