"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 unaccusativity is a central focus for the study of the complex properties of verb classes. The Unaccusative Hypothesis, first formulated in 1978, claimed that there are two classes of intransitive verbs, the unaccusative (Jill arrived) and the unergative or agentive (Jill sings). The hypothesis has provided a rich context for debating whether syntactic behaviour is semantically or lexically determined, the consequence of syntactic context, or a combination of these factors. No consensus has been reached. This book combines new approaches to the subject with several papers that have achieved a significant status even though formally unpublished. Among the issues the authors address are: the determination of the unaccusative class of verbs, the problem of unaccusativity diagnostics, the implications of special morphology for the structural representation of unaccusatives and the status of the external thematic role, the properties guiding the unergative versus unaccusative distinction in acquisition, and the properties of second-language lexicon.