"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
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.
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.
This unique book provides an introductory overview of modern theoretical
linguistics which manages to be both accessible and humorous without
sacrificing either scholarship of insight. However profound or however
trivial the questions we raise and try answer - What exactly does one have
to know to count as a speaker of a language? What would it mean for a
language to have no vowels? Why do little children call lorries 'lollies'?
Precisely what with this sentence is wrong? - we need to recourse to a
theory even to make them coherent. In particular, the author argues that we
can find solutions to our puzzles, and explanations for these phenomena, if
we exploit on the one hand Chomsky's theory of Generative Grammar, and on
the other Sperber and Wilson's theory of Relevance.