"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.
A focus on regional varieties in pluricentric languages
This collection of papers is designed to establish variational
pragmatics. This new field is situated at the interface of pragmatics
and dialectology and aims at systematically investigating the effect of
macro-social pragmatic variation on language in action. As such, it
challenges the widespread assumption in the area of pragmatics that
language communities are homogeneous and also addresses the
current research gap in sociolinguistics for variation on the pragmatic
level. The introductory chapter establishes the rationale for studying
variational pragmatics as a separate field of inquiry, systematically
sketches the broader theoretical framework and presents a framework
for further analysis. The papers which follow are located within this
framework. They present empirical variational pragmatic research
focusing on regional varieties of pluricentric languages. Speech acts
and other discourse phenomena are addressed and analysed in a
number of regional varieties of Dutch, English, French, German and
Spanish. The seminal nature of this volume, its empirical orientation
and the extensive bibliography make this book of interest to both
researchers and students in pragmatics and sociolinguistics.