LINGUIST List 6.321

Wed 01 Mar 1995

Qs: ASL proficiency, Firthian, Grammar, Rogue prepositions

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  1. Douglas J. Glick, ASL proficiency
  2. Alan Firth, Firthian (Socio)linguistics
  3. Jeffrey H. Allen (AXIS CONTRACT, Grammar course
  4. Stephen Wechsler, rogue prepositions

Message 1: ASL proficiency

Date: 28 Feb 1995 00:17:33 -0400ASL proficiency
From: Douglas J. Glick <>
Subject: ASL proficiency

I've been asked by the dean here at Vassar College, if there are any
standard measures of proficiency in ASL. She is trying to put together
course and test requirements and needs relatively specific information. Can
anyone help her out here?

Douglas J. Glick
Department of Anthropology
Vassar College
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Message 2: Firthian (Socio)linguistics

Date: Tue, 28 Feb 95 15:18:12 +0Firthian (Socio)linguistics
From: Alan Firth <>
Subject: Firthian (Socio)linguistics

I am currently working on a book that addresses the interrelationship of
(institutional) context and discourse, and am almost inexhorably drawn to
J.R. Firth's (no relation) notion of 'Context of Situation'. Is anyone
working with this (theoretical) issue - i.e. the applicability of Firthian
views on 'context' to actual analyses of situated discourse? I am familiar,
of course, with the Halliday et al. 1964 collection (In Honour of J.R.
Firth), and Firth's own publications, but not with any recent researches.
Would anyone be able to provide me with references of potentially relevant
sources, not least those that attempt a present-day appraisal of the
'context of situation' notion?
Dr. Alan Firth
Aalborg University, Denmark
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Message 3: Grammar course

Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 08:26:30 Grammar course
From: Jeffrey H. Allen (AXIS CONTRACT <>
Subject: Grammar course

I am looking for a grammar book and/or course that can allow me to teach the
basics of grammar in a time frame of 4-6 hours, including hands-on exercise
time. The target group would have high school/first year college level
English skills but have worked in the business sector for many years and have
not necessarily continued reinforcing English skills through the college
education track.

The book/course must emphasize teaching the essentials of grammar (eg N,V,Adj,
Adv, Prep, articles, demonstratives, connectors, phrases, clauses, relatives,
comparative, superlative, etc) to technical writers that are neither English
nor foreign language specialists. I do not want a writing seminar or book
that aims at teaching typical business writing styles (memos, letters, faxes,
e-mail, etc), vocabulary buildup, commonly confused homonyms, avoiding sexist
language, use of capitalization and punctuation, and the like. I need a real
grammar course that can review the essentials to such a target group within
the time fram mentioned above.

Please send your suggestions directly to me at either of the following:


Thanks in advance.

Jeff Allen
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Message 4: rogue prepositions

Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 10:27:53 rogue prepositions
From: Stephen Wechsler <>
Subject: rogue prepositions

I am looking for examples of prepositions heading what appear to be
complement PPs which are not normally assumed to be lexically
subcategorized by the verb (or other governor), but instead are licensed
by pragmatic context. Examples:

1. This system penalizes people FROM pursuing that option.
 [where the penalty prevents or dissuades them from pursuing...]

2. He coughed TO the auctioneer.
 [where coughing is understood as a signal]

If you happen to see anything like this, please send it to me at:

--Steve Wechsler
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