Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info

New from Oxford University Press!


May I Quote You on That?

By Stephen Spector

A guide to English grammar and usage for the twenty-first century, pairing grammar rules with interesting and humorous quotations from American popular culture.

New from Cambridge University Press!


The Cambridge Handbook of Endangered Languages

Edited By Peter K. Austin and Julia Sallabank

This book "examines the reasons behind the dramatic loss of linguistic diversity, why it matters, and what can be done to document and support endangered languages."

Book Information


Title: Playing with Words
Subtitle: Humour in the English Language
Written By: Barry J. Blake

Humour permeates our lives. People tell jokes, make puns, and engage in
witty banter. There is written humour in headlines and captions, in ads, on
signs, t-shirts, and bumper stickers, and in the form of graffiti.
Nowadays humour is available on the web and circulated by e-mail.

'Playing with Words' shows how every facet of language is exploited for
humour. Where a word has multiple meanings or sounds like another, this is
the basis for puns (A boiled egg is hard to beat). The word-building rules
are used for clever compounds, smart blends and catchy phrases as in
'circulated by word of mouse'. Ambiguities in the syntax afford further
scope for humour (Miners refuse to work after death), and the sounds of
words can be exploited in humorous verse. There is also humour to be found
in slips of the tongue, malapropisms, and funny misspellings.

Playing with Words also covers the subject matter of humour and the part it
plays in society. It is an informed account in non-technical language, full
of examples, a book to be read for information and for fun.

Publication Year: 2007
Publisher: Equinox Publishing Ltd
Review: Read the review
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
Click here to see the original emailed issue.

Format: Paperback
ISBN: 1845533305
ISBN-13: 9781845533304
Prices: U.K. £ 10.99
U.S. $ 19.95