"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 Acquisition of the Chinese Ba-Construction. Hang Du. Munich: Lincom Europa, 2006. Pp. 185. 64.20€.
Ubiquitous but elusive, the Chinese ba-construction has attracted a great deal of attention in Chinese linguistics, but its acquisition by second language (L2) learners has not been investigated systematically. This monograph, based on the author's doctoral dissertation, presents an interesting and innovative treatment of the acquisition of the Chinese ba-construction by native speakers of English. The volume fills a gap in the literature by investigating learners' sensitivity to the constraints on nominal phrases with ba (ba-NP) and verbal phrases with ba (ba-VP). An example of a ba-construction is given in (1), where the functional morpheme ba precedes the object, which, in turn, precedes the verb: