"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 thesis of this book is that neither laughter nor humor can be
understood apart from the feeling that underlies them. This feeling is a
mental state in which people exclude some situation from their knowledge of
how the world really is, thereby inhibiting seriousness where seriousness
would be counterproductive. Laughter is viewed as an expression of this
feeling, and humor as a set of devices designed to trigger it because it is
so pleasant and distracting. Beginning with phonetic analyses of laughter,
the book examines ways in which the feeling behind the laughter is elicited
by both humorous and nonhumorous situations. It discusses properties of
this feeling that justify its inclusion in the repertoire of human
emotions. Against this background it illustrates the creation of humor in
several folklore genres and across several cultures. Finally, it reconciles
this understanding with various already familiar ways of explaining humor