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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: English–Afrikaans intrasentential code switching: Testing a feature checking account
Author: Ondene van Dulm
Institution: Stellenbosch University
Linguistic Field: Cognitive Science; Syntax
Subject Language: English
Afrikaans
Abstract: The work presented here aims to account for the structure of intrasentential code switching between English and Afrikaans within the framework of feature checking theory, a theory associated with minimalist syntax. Six constructions in which verb position differs between English and Afrikaans were analysed in terms of differences in the strength of particular features associated with functional categories, and the ability of verbs of either language to check these features. Predictions for the well-formedness of code-switched constructions were informed by data elicited from thirty fluently bilingual participants by means of relative judgements of visually-presented code-switched sentences and auditorily-presented code-switched utterances, and a sentence construction task. Findings indicated straightforward support for the predictions for adverb, focalisation, and topicalisation constructions, but less support for embedded that and wh clauses and yes-no questions. Alternative explanations for the latter results are proposed. The work suggests that the same mechanisms and devices proposed to account for monolingual data can also account for code-switching data.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Bilingualism: Language and Cognition Vol. 12, Issue 2, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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