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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: The Rise and Fall of Constructions and the History of English Do-Support
Author: Peter W. Culicover
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://www.ling.ohio-state.edu/~culicove
Institution: Ohio State University
Linguistic Field: Historical Linguistics; Linguistic Theories; Syntax
Subject Language: English
Abstract: Do-support is a unique characteristic of English. Many languages other than English have do-periphrasis but not English-type do-support. This raises the obvious question: What is special about English? The goal of this paper is to provide an account of English do-support that explains why do-support, with its attendant properties, is found uniquely in English. I review the classical derivational approaches to do-support and argue that they do not satisfactorily capture the generalizations. I suggest an alternative, non-derivational account of contemporary do-support that makes crucial use of constructions. Finally, I propose an account of the history of do-support in English that characterizes the changes in terms of the content and scope of constructions. The rise of do-support can be understood as a consequence of the contraction and re-specialization of particular constructions in the wake of well-documented changes in the overt morphological system of the language.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Journal of Germanic Linguistics Vol. 20, Issue 1, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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