Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info


New from Oxford University Press!

ad

Raciolinguistics

Edited by H. Samy Alim, John R. Rickford, and Arnetha F. Ball

Raciolinguistics "Brings together a critical mass of scholars to form a new field dedicated to theorizing and analyzing language and race together."


New from Cambridge University Press!

ad

Sociolinguistics from the Periphery

By Sari Pietikäinen, FinlandAlexandra Jaffe, Long BeachHelen Kelly-Holmes, and Nikolas Coupland

Sociolinguistics from the Periphery "presents a fascinating book about change: shifting political, economic and cultural conditions; ephemeral, sometimes even seasonal, multilingualism; and altered imaginaries for minority and indigenous languages and their users."


Academic Paper


Title: On the History of 'downright'
Author: Belén Méndez-Naya
Linguistic Field: Historical Linguistics; Text/Corpus Linguistics
Subject Language: English
Abstract: Using data retrieved from a variety of diachronic corpora and the OED quotation database, this diachronic study sheds light on the origin and development of the degree function of a low-frequency intensifier, English downright, both as an adverb (it's downright rude) and as a reinforcing adjective (downright nonsense). The history of downright illustrates the interplay between lexicalization and grammaticalization in the evolution of a single item and provides a good example of the crucial role of context and inferencing in semantic change, and of two different trajectories in the development of intensifiers (adjunct > degree modifier, and descriptive adjective > affective adjective > intensifier).

CUP AT LINGUIST

This article appears IN English Language and Linguistics Vol. 12, Issue 2.

Return to TOC.

Add a new paper
Return to Academic Papers main page
Return to Directory of Linguists main page