"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 phenomenon of clefts is beyond doubt a golden oldie. It has captivated linguists of different disciplines for decades. The fascination arises from the unique syntax of clefts in interaction with their pragmatic and semantic interpretation. Clefts structure sentences according to the information state of the constituents contained in them. They are special as they exhibit a rather uncommon syntactic form to achieve the separation of the prominent part, either focal or topical, from the background of the clause. Despite the long-lasting interest in clefts, linguists have not yet come to an agreement on many basic questions. The articles contained in this volume address these issues from new theoretical and empirical perspectives. Based on data from about 50 languages from all over the world, this volume presents new arguments for the proper derivation of clefts, and contributes to the ongoing debate on the information-structural impact of cleft structures. Theoretically, it combines modern syntactic theorizing with investigations at the interface between grammar and information-structure.