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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.

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Title: Expletives in Existentials
Written By: Jutta M . Hartmann
Series Title: LOT Dissertation Series 181

This thesis refutes the generally accepted claim within Generative Grammar
that English there is an expletive (meaningless element) that is only
present to satisfy a syntactic requirement. Instead it is argued that there
is a proform that picks up a situation (or location) from the context.
There is a part of the predication structure in existential sentences,
which state about the situation that it contains an individual (or amount
of a property) specified by the postverbal noun phrase.
New data that are relevant for the definiteness effect are presented and it
is demonstrated that we need to distinguish between two types of
there-sentences: the results of a Magnitude Estimation Experiment for
example show that these so-called there-BE and there-V sentences behave
differently with respect to whmovement (among other differences).
Therefore, the two construction types are analysed differently: in there-BE
sentences, there is proposed to function as the subject of predication,
whereas it functions as the predicate in there-V sentences (just like in
the locative inversion construction). The thesis concludes with applying
the result of the investigation of English there to German da, and shows
that also da is a proform that can pick up locations, times and complex
situations in the context.
The study offers new insights into the analysis of existential sentences
and has implications for the analysis of potential subject positions, the
EPP, and the classification of expletives in the Germanic languages. It is
therefore interesting for scholars working in these fields and syntax in

Publication Year: 2008
Publisher: Netherlands Graduate School of Linguistics / Landelijke (LOT)
Review: Not available for review. If you would like to review a book on The LINGUIST List, please login to view the AFR list.
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Syntax
Subject Language(s): English
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Format: Paperback
ISBN-13: 9789078328551
Pages: 329
Prices: Europe EURO 26.58