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LINGUIST List 20.3635

Tue Oct 27 2009

Books: Syntax/Morphology: Berezowski

Editor for this issue: Hannah Morales <hannahlinguistlist.org>

Links to the websites of all LINGUIST's supporting publishers are available at the end of this issue.
        1.    Jennifer Tighe, The Myth of the Zero Article: Berezowski

Message 1: The Myth of the Zero Article: Berezowski
Date: 27-Oct-2009
From: Jennifer Tighe <jtighecontinuum-books.com>
Subject: The Myth of the Zero Article: Berezowski
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Title: The Myth of the Zero Article
Published: 2009
Publisher: Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd

Book URL: http://www.continuumbooks.com/books/detail.aspx?BookId=133813&SearchType=Basic

Author: Leszek Berezowski
Hardback: ISBN: 9781441185136 Pages: 160 Price: U.K. £ 45.00

"Addressing a recurrent issue in the teaching and learning of English,
Professor Berezowski proposes a new and workable model for determining when
English has no article. Well written and argued, this little book makes a
helpful contribution to this vexed area of English grammar, and it should
prove illuminating to teachers and learners of English as a foreign language."
- Howard Jackson, Emeritus Professor of English Language & Linguistics,
Birmingham City University, UK

The zero article is a staple element of any description of English article
usage from advanced research publications down to student grammars, but
there has been very little inquiry into its meaning and its other
properties. There are copious amounts of publications dealing with the
definite and indefinite articles but none about the zero article.

Berezowski's book investigates the origin of the concept of the zero
article and shows that it has roots both in structural linguistics of the
1940s and earlier historical linguistics. Structural linguists went on to
claim that, since the use of articles in English is deemed 'obligatory',
the zero article exists but it has no overt form. Looking through earlier
attempts at analyzing the meaning of the zero article, from Jespersen to
Chesterman, Berezowksi shows how they all fail.

The book develops an answer to the problems noted based on the theory of
grammaticalization; it is shown that English articles have not yet reached
a stage in their development where their use has spread to all grammatical
environments. Thus, a model is developed for determining when there is no
article in English. The new model is tested against a commonly occurring
case of zero article, using a corpus-based approach.

The Myth of the Zero Article will appeal to academics and students
interested in grammar and syntax. It covers an issue recurrent in the
teaching and learning of English as Second/Foreign language, and will also
appeal to teacher trainers and trainee teachers.

Linguistic Field(s): Morphology

Subject Language(s): English (eng)

Written In: English (eng )

See this book announcement on our website:

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