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Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"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



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What is English? And Why Should We Care?

By: Tim William Machan

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.


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Medical Writing in Early Modern English

Edited by Irma Taavitsainen and Paivi Pahta

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.


Academic Paper


Title: John Lipski, A history of Afro-Hispanic language: Five centuries, five continents
Author: J. Clancy Clements
Institution: Indiana University
Linguistic Field: Sociolinguistics
Subject Language Family: Creole
Abstract: John Lipski, A history of Afro-Hispanic language: Five centuries, five continents. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005. x, 363. Hb. In the most comprehensive volume to date, John Lipski, one of the top scholars on Afro-Hispanic language varieties, traces the history of African–Iberian linguistic contact from its origins with the importation of black African slaves to Portugal and Spain to the present-day situation of these varieties. The book can be divided into two parts: chapters 1-5 contain the introduction and a detailed review of the data, while chapters 6-9 examine how the data bear on the likelihood of the independent formation of a Spanish-based creole in the Caribbean. In chapter 1 Lipski details the first significant African–Iberian contacts, with sections on the different phases of colonization and slavery, tracing the Portuguese expansion in Africa and Asia, the role of the Spanish, the ascent of Dutch and English in the colonization scene, and the slave trade. He focuses on African slavery in South America, noting that there were fewer blacks than whites until the 19th century, when the big plantations came into their own. At this time, we find a disproportionate number of blacks to whites in some areas of the Caribbean and Latin America.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Language in Society Vol. 36, Issue 3, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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