"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.
Evolution of language has evolved at multiple levels--from changes in the
cognitive processes by which language is acquired in the individual, to
language change by diffusion of acquired linguistic features across
populations of individuals, to the emergence of linguistic features over
phylogenetic time scales. Evolution of language at each of these levels
interacts with that at each other level.
This volume is a collection of essays by noted researchers from diverse
fields that deals with a broad spectrum of issues in the study of language
evolution. The principle topics addressed here include:
(1) the genetic and cognitive bases for the phylogenetic emergence of
(2) several distinct accounts of the underlying cognitive processes by
which children learn to acquire language;
(3) a critique of the methods employed by historical linguists in the last
(4) the modeling of language evolution using mathematical and computational
(5) discussions on the complexity of language.