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New from Oxford University Press!


It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

New from Cambridge University Press!


Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Book Information


Title: You Know What I Mean?
Subtitle: Words, Contexts and Communication
Written By: Ruth Wajnryb

Does a word mean what it says? Sometimes - but not always. Everyone thinks
that meaning is contained within words - like sardines in a tin, or milk in
a bottle. After all, words are nice stable things that you can look up in a
dictionary aren't they? But dictionaries only take us so far… If you
eavesdropped on a teenage conversation, rushing to a dictionary - with its
definitions frozen in time - wouldn't help much. Who's using a word and to
whom, in what context, for what purpose - all these influence the
meaning of the language we use. The word's origins and history (its
'genetics') also help. Try teaching yourself another language from a
phrasebook and you'll soon learn that you can be correct, in the formal
sense, but still way behind the times in reality. In this book Wajnryb
considers these and other questions to explore how and why our language
works the way it does.

Publication Year: 2008
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics
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Format: Hardback
ISBN: 0521878853
ISBN-13: 9780521878852
Prices: U.S. $ 75.00
U.K. £ 35.00

Format: Paperback
ISBN: 0521703743
ISBN-13: 9780521703741
Prices: U.K. £ 12.99
U.S. $ 19.99