LINGUIST List 5.550

Mon 16 May 1994

Qs: Dialect, Foreign language competency, Proper nouns, Typing

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Directory

  1. , 3rd singular _be's_ for _is_
  2. T.F. Mills, statistics on foreign language competency?
  3. , proper nouns and phonological rules
  4. , "assimilation" in typing

Message 1: 3rd singular _be's_ for _is_

Date: Fri, 13 May 1994 11:04:14 3rd singular _be's_ for _is_
From: <ling003csc.canterbury.ac.nz>
Subject: 3rd singular _be's_ for _is_

An MA student here is working on nonstandard auxiliary use in New
Zealand English. On the West Coast of the South Island, by contrast
with Christchurch on the east coast, she finds that an unexpectedly
large proportion of teenagers accept (a) without qualms:

(a) So Andrew stands on his desk and be's Alexander the Great.

The West Coast happens also to be an area where the early white
settlers included relatively many Irish, so one is naturally tempted
to link this with the 3rd singular _be's_ reported for
Hiberno-English. But the sense seems wrong; Hiberno-English _be's_
is said to be habitual, whereas in (a) the sense is rather 'acts,
pretends to be'. Anecdotally, we have reports of another
nonhabitual _be's_, as in (b) -- this one in Christchurch too:

(b) If he be's good, he'll get to go out tonight.

Here it seems as if the idiom _be good_ 'behave well' is resisting
the peculiar allomorphy of the ordinary auxiliary _be_.

Can anyone out there shed any light on nonhabitual 3rd singular
_be's_, or point us to relevant publications?
Andrew Carstairs-McCarthy
Department of Linguistics, University of Canterbury, Private Bag 4800,
Christchurch, New Zealand
Phone +64-3-364 2211; home phone +64-3-355 5108
Fax +64-3-364
 2065

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Message 2: statistics on foreign language competency?

Date: Tue, 10 May 1994 02:42:44 statistics on foreign language competency?
From: T.F. Mills <tomillsdiana.cair.du.edu>
Subject: statistics on foreign language competency?

This question is cross-posted to Linguist and Flteach. Apologies for
any duplication.

Dear netters,

I am hoping that some of you can point me to reliable and reasonably
up-to-date STATISTICS on any or all of the following (either on the
net or published elsewhere):

 * percentage of US college graduates fluent in second language
 * US college foreign language entrance requirements
 * US college foreign language graduation requirements
 * US graduate school foreign language entrance requirements
 * international comparisons of the above statistics

I am not on this list, so please respond to me directly. Thanks for
your help.


T. F. Mills tomillsdiana.cair.du.edu
University of Denver Library 2150 E. Evans Ave. Denver CO 80208 USA
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Message 3: proper nouns and phonological rules

Date: Fri, 13 May 94 11:03 CDT
From: <TB0EXC1NIU.bitnet>
Subject: proper nouns and phonological rules

In Introduction to Phonological Theory, Robert Harms mentions
the case of Finnish, where proper nouns are exempt from certain
phonological rules, not because of their phonetic/phonemic
make up but simply because they are proper nouns. Does anyone know,
first, if this is a general case - are ALL proper nouns exempt from
a 'significant' number of rules, and are there other cases in other
languages. You can send responses to me or to the list; I'll
summarize if there are sufficient responses
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Message 4: "assimilation" in typing

Date: Sat, 14 May 1994 10:00:05 "assimilation" in typing
From: <wclivax.ox.ac.uk>
Subject: "assimilation" in typing

When typing e-mail messages, I often observe what seems to be the keyboard
equivalent of assimilation in speech, e.g.

(1) anticipatory "assimilation":
artuculation (articulation)
mastakes (mistakes)

(2) perservatory "assimilation"
I found some software someware (I found some software somewhere)

Is it just me or does it also happen to other people? Have there been any
psycholinguistic studies done on similar phenomena in typing?

Wenchao Li
Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford University
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