"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.
In this book, Michela Ippolito proposes a compositional semantics for subjunctive (or would) conditionals in English that accounts for their felicity conditions and the constraints on the satisfaction of their presuppositions by capitalizing on the occurrence of past tense morphology in both antecedent and consequent clauses. Very little of the extensive literature on subjunctive conditionals tries to account for the meaning of these sentences compositionally or to relate this meaning to their linguistic form; this book fills that gap, connecting the different lines of research on conditionals. Ippolito’s proposal will be of interest both to linguists and to philosophers concerned with conditionals and modality more generally.
Ippolito reviews previous analyses of counterfactuals and subjunctive conditionals in the work of David Lewis, Robert Stalnaker, Angelika Kratzer, and others; considers the contrast between future simple past subjunctive conditionals and future past perfect subjunctive conditionals; presents a proposal for subjunctive conditionals that addresses puzzles left unsolved by previous proposals; reviews a number of presupposition triggers showing that they fit the pattern predicted by her proposal; and discusses an asymmetry between the past and the future among subjunctive conditionals, arguing that the best account of our linguistic intuitions must include an indeterministic view of the world.