A vivid commentary on Jewish survival and Jewish speech communities that will be enjoyed by the general reader, and is essential reading for students and researchers interested in the study of Middle Eastern languages, Jewish studies, and sociolinguistics.
Language demonstrates structure while also showing considerable variation
at all levels: languages differ from one another while still being shaped
by the same principles; utterances within a language differ from one
another while exhibiting the same structural patterns; languages change
over time, but in fairly regular ways. This book focuses on the dynamic
processes that create languages and give them their structure and variance.
It outlines a theory of language that addresses the nature of grammar,
taking into account its variance and gradience, and seeks explanation in
terms of the recurrent processes that operate in language use. The evidence
is based on the study of large corpora of spoken and written language, what
we know about how languages change, as well as the results of experiments
with language users. The result is an integrated theory of language use and
language change which has implications for cognitive processing and