Featured Linguist!

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: Neural Plasticity in Speech Acquisition and Learning
Author: Yang Zhang
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://www.slhs.umn.edu/people/profile.php?UID=zhang470
Institution: University of Minnesota
Author: Yue Wang
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://www.sfu.ca/linguistics/people/faculty/wang.html
Institution: Simon Fraser University
Linguistic Field: Applied Linguistics; Cognitive Science; Language Acquisition; Neurolinguistics; Phonetics
Abstract: Neural plasticity in speech acquisition and learning is concerned with the timeline trajectory and the mechanisms of experience-driven changes in the neural circuits that support or disrupt linguistic function. In this selective review, we discuss the role of phonetic learning in language acquisition, the "critical period" of learning, the agents of neural plasticity, and the distinctiveness of linguistic systems in the brain. In particular, we argue for the necessity to look at brain–behavior connections using modern brain imaging techniques, seek explanations based on measures of neural sensitivity, neural efficiency, neural specificity and neural connectivity at the cortical level, and point out some key factors that may facilitate or limit second language learning. We conclude by highlighting the theoretical and practical issues for future studies and suggest ways to optimize language learning and treatment.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Bilingualism: Language and Cognition Vol. 10, Issue 2, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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