"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.
Prosody and the Acquisition of Grammatical Morphemes in Chinese Languages
In this comparison study, Hung investigates the influence of prosodic and phonological characteristics on the acquisition of frequently occurring grammatical morphemes in two morphosyntactically similar but prosodically different languages, namely Taiwan Mandarin Chinese (MC) and Taiwanese (TW). Through an analysis of the patterns of realization and omission of these morphemes in children's speech, he concludes that rhythmic characteristics of languages can affect segmentation of input speech by providing different kinds of prosodic handles for the novice to grasp. Metrical feet may offer MC children one kind of segmentation handle: neutral-toned grammatical morphemes that closely follow full-toned content words are in a position to be picked up as parts of unopened packages. In TW, however, since there is no opposition between full- and neutral-toned syllables, all syllables contribute equally to linguistic rhythm, and the syllable more likely functions as a segmentation unit for TW children.