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"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



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What is English? And Why Should We Care?

By: Tim William Machan

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.


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Medical Writing in Early Modern English

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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.


Book Information

   

Title: Syllable Structure
Subtitle: The Limits of Variation
Written By: San Duanmu
URL: http://www.oup.com/uk/catalogue/?ci=9780199267590
Description:

This book looks at the range of possible syllables in human languages. The
syllable is a central notion in phonology but basic questions about it
remain poorly understood and phonologists are divided on even the most
elementary issues. For example, the word city has been syllabified as ci-ty
(the 'maximal onset' analysis), cit-y (the 'no-open-lax-V' analysis), and
cit-ty (the 'geminate C' analysis).

San Duanmu explores and clarifies these and many other related issues
through an in-depth analysis of entire lexicons of several languages. Some
languages, such as Standard and Shanghai Chinese, have fairly simple
syllables, yet a minimal difference in syllable structure has lead to a
dramatic difference in tonal behavior. Other languages, such as English,
German, and Jiarong, have long consonant clusters and have been thought to
require very large syllables: San Duanmu shows that the actual syllable
structure in these languages is much simpler. He bases his analyses on
quantitative data, paying equal attention to generalizations that are
likely to be universal. He shows that a successful analysis of the syllable
must take into account several theories, including feature theory, the
Weight-Stress Principle, the size of morpheme inventory, and the metrical
representation of the syllable.

San Duanmu's clear exposition will appeal to phonologists and advanced
students and will provide a new benchmark in syllabic and prosodic
analysis. He also offers an answer to the intriguing question: how
different can human languages be?

Publication Year: 2008
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Review: Read the review
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Linguistic Theories
Phonology
Typology
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.

Versions:
Format: Hardback
ISBN: 0199267596
ISBN-13: 9780199267590
Pages: 304
Prices: U.K. £ 55.00
U.S. $ 110.00