"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more
To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.
This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.
Speech reporting in a historical-pragmatic perspective
Reanimated Voices addresses three activities: reporters evoking speech events; interpreters (re)constituting those speech events; and historical pragmaticians eavesdropping in time on the reporters and interpreters. Can one reconstruct aspects of pragmatic competence on the basis of written texts only? Reanimated Voices answers this in the affirmative. It offers a methodology for historical-pragmatic reconstruction to explain the synchronic patterns of variation in premodern writings.
Reanimated Voices examines the distribution of reporting strategies in a corpus of medieval Russian texts. Forms preferred in specific recurring contexts are matched with the need(s) served by those contexts - a fit reflecting collective intentionality. Occasional "residual forms" -strategies that appear in contexts where others predominate- also reflect cooperative behavior; they index utterances departing from the prototype or unusual configurations of participants. Thus Reanimated Voices explores reporting as an activity of rational agents coordinating interpretation in accordance with cultural and institutional notions of relevance.