"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.
The present volume represents a selection of papers presented at the
International Symposium on Ideophones held in January 1999 in St. Augustin,
Germany. They center around the following hypotheses: Ideophones are
universal; and constitute a grammatical category in all languages of the
world; ideophones and similar words have a special dramaturgic function
that differs from all other word classes: they simulate an event, an
emotion, a perception through language. In addition to this unique
function, a good number of formal parallels can be observed. The languages
dealt with here display strikingly similar patterns of derivational
processes involving ideophones. An equally widespread common feature is the
introduction of ideophones via a verbum dicendi or complementizer. Another
observation concerns the sound-symbolic behavior of ideophones. Thus the
word formation of ideophones differs from other words in their tendency for
iconicity and sound-symbolism. Finally it is made clear that ideophones are
part of spoken language — the language register, where gestures are used —
rather than written language.