"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.
Codes and Consequences: Choosing Linguistic Variety
Carol Myers-Scotton has edited a collection of essays that covers the choice of one style of English over another in everything from Bible translations to "surprise in poetry" to supervisor-worker interactions on the automobile assembly line. An important theme developed to varying degrees in these papers is the notion that speakers and writers, as rational actors, exploit the unmarked-marked opposition regarding audience expectations so as to convey messages of intentionality charged with social or psychological import.