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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: Parasitism as a Default Mechanism in L3 Vocabulary Acquisition
Author: Christopher J. Hall
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: www.yorksj.ac.uk/c.hall
Institution: York St John University
Author: Peter Ecke
Institution: University of Arizona
Linguistic Field: Applied Linguistics; Psycholinguistics
Abstract: The human capacity to categorise new information on the basis of similarity with existing knowledge representations is, perhaps, the most important organising principle for mental representation. It is essential for the development of conceptual relations and networks (Rosch, 1978; Smith and Medin, 1981; Schönpflug, this volume), as well as for the acquisition and organisation of the mental lexicon (Fay and Cutler, 1977; Peters, 1983). In this chapter, we discuss a model of vocabulary acquisition that has as its cornerstone the detection and exploitation of similarity between novel lexical input and prior lexical knowledge. This processing and storage mechanism has been characterised metaphorically as a "parasitic learning strategy" (Hall, 1992), and is hypothesised to constitute a default cognitive procedure, modulated in practice by other factors external to the lexicon. Earlier versions of the parasitic model were developed to explain aspects of L2 vocabulary acquisition (Hall, 1996, 2002; Hall and Schultz, 1994). In the present contribution, we extend the model to L3 (following Ecke and Hall, 1998, 2000; Ecke 2001), using evidence from a corpus of spoken lexical errors in novice learners of L3 German.
Type: Individual Paper
Status: Completed
Publication Info: The Multilingual Lexicon (Jasone Cenoz, Britta Hufeisen and Ulrike Jessner, editors)Cenoz, Jasone/Britta Hufeisen/Ulrike Jessner [eds.]. The Multilingual Lexicon.


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