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Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"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



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What is English? And Why Should We Care?

By: Tim William Machan

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.


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Medical Writing in Early Modern English

Edited by Irma Taavitsainen and Paivi Pahta

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.


Book Information

   

Title: Syntax I. An Introduction
Translated By: T. Givón
Description:

This new edition of Syntax is at many points radically revised. In the previous edition (1984) the author deliberately chose to de-emphasize the more formal aspects of syntactic structure, in favor of a more comprehensive treatment of the semantic and pragmatic correlates of syntactic structure. With hindsight the author now finds the de-emphasis of the formal properties a somewhat regrettable choice, since it creates the false impression that one could somehow be a functionalist without being at the same time a structuralist. To redress the balance, explicit treatment is given to the core formal properties of syntactic constructions, such as constituency and hierarchy (phrase structure), grammatical relations and relational control, clause union, finiteness and governed constructions.


At the same time, the cognitive and communicative underpinning of grammatical universals are further elucidated and underscored, and the interplay between grammar, cognition and neurology is outlined. Also the relevant typological database is expanded, now exploring in greater precision the bounds of syntactic diversity. Lastly, Syntax treats synchronic-typological diversity more explicitly as the dynamic by-product of diachronic development or grammaticalization. In so doing a parallel is drawn between linguistic diversity and diachrony on the one hand and biological diversity and evolution on the other. It is then suggested that -- as in biology -- synchronic universals of grammar are exercised and instantiated primarily as constraints on development, and are thus merely the apparent by-products of universal constraints on grammaticalization.

Publication Year: 2001
Publisher: John Benjamins
Review: Not available for review. If you would like to review a book on The LINGUIST List, please login to view the AFR list.
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Syntax
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
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ISBN: 1588110656
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