"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.
The papers brought together in this volume illustrate how spoken corpora (be
they native or learner corpora) can provide insights into various aspects of errors
and disfluencies such as pauses and discourse markers. They show, among
others, that such phenomena can be influenced by factors like gender, age or
genre, and that they can correlate with, e.g., informativeness and syntactic
complexity. Crucially, they also demonstrate that items which are often
dismissed as mere disfluencies can fulfil important functions and thus play an
essential role in the management of spoken discourse. The book should appeal
to linguists who are interested in spoken language in general and in errors and
disfluencies in speech in particular, as well as to specialists in second language
acquisition and language testing who want to know more about the nature of
fluency and accuracy. Originally published in International Journal of Corpus
Linguistics 16:2 (2011)