"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 volume addresses the themes of language, identity and linguistic politics in Europe. The twelve essays draw on approaches and methodologies from a range of disciplines, from sociolinguistics and contact linguistics to cultural history, psychology and policy studies. Together, they offer a collection of views on how language, society and identity are perceived to be connected. These issues are of particular importance in Europe, where the nation-building project is often paired with a linguistically based notion of social identity.
However, historical forces including shifting borders, economically and politically motivated mobility and changing political regimes have led to more complex national identities and more nuanced approaches to the role of language. Both historical developments and contemporary sociolinguistic contexts are investigated in the book, including the presence of multilingual communities and minority language communities. The volume makes a significant and timely contribution to our understanding of the linguistic landscape of today’s Europe.