This book "asserts that the origin and spread of languages must be examined primarily through the time-tested techniques of linguistic analysis, rather than those of evolutionary biology" and "defends traditional practices in historical linguistics while remaining open to new techniques, including computational methods" and "will appeal to readers interested in world history and world geography."
This collection of previously unpublished, cutting-edge research discusses the conversation analysis (CA) approach to understanding language use. CA is the dominant theory for analyzing the social use of language and is concerned with the description of how speakers engage in conversation and other forms of social interaction involving language. Its proponents are not only linguists but sociologists and anthropologists as well. The unifying theme of these chapters is the intersection of practice and form through the construction of turns and sequences.