"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.
Based on an exhaustive search of published sources and the author's firsthand fieldwork, Concreteness in Grammar explores the role of phonological form in the noun class systems of the Arapesh languages spoken in Papua New Guinea. Linguists have long known that from plays a critical role alongside semantics in the classification of lexical items. In Arapesh, virtually every possible final ending of a noun is represented in the paradigm of noun class and agreement markers, reflecting an interpenetration of sound structure and grammar that many would disallow as wildly unconstrained. In this book, Lise Dobrin describes these formal patterns in order to reveal their naturalness and elegance, establishing their place in a typology of noun class systems and drawing out their significance for theories of grammatical architecture. A rigorous study of an endangered language, Concreteness in Grammar revisits the definition of a morpheme and looks at unusual language patterns to reveal the naturalness of grammar.