"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 sound pattern of Japanese, with its characteristic pitch accent system
and rich segmental alternations, has played an important role in modern
phonology, from structuralist phonemics to current constraint-based
theories. In Japanese Morphophonemics Junko Ito and Armin Mester provide
the first book-length treatment of central issues in Japanese phonology
from the perspective of Optimality Theory.
In Optimality Theory (OT), a generative grammar (including its phonological
component) is built directly on the often conflicting demands of different
grammatical principles and incorporates a specific kind of optimization as
the means of resolving these conflicts. OT offers a new perspective from
which to view many of the processes, alternations, and generalizations that
are the traditional subject matter of phonology. Using the phonology of
compounds as an analytical thread, Ito and Mester revisit central aspects
of the sound pattern of Japanese and submit them to the rigor of OT. In
pursuing both well-known and less-explored issues in this area, they show
that an optimality-theoretic approach not only provides new solutions to
old puzzles but also suggests interesting new questions for both
descriptive work and theoretical research.