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Words in Time and Place: Exploring Language Through the Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary

By David Crystal

Offers a unique view of the English language and its development, and includes witty commentary and anecdotes along the way.


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The Indo-European Controversy: Facts and Fallacies in Historical Linguistics

By Asya Pereltsvaig and Martin W. Lewis

This book "asserts that the origin and spread of languages must be examined primarily through the time-tested techniques of linguistic analysis, rather than those of evolutionary biology" and "defends traditional practices in historical linguistics while remaining open to new techniques, including computational methods" and "will appeal to readers interested in world history and world geography."


Academic Paper


Title: Learning Lexical Indexation
Author: Andries W. Coetzee
Email: click here TO access email
Homepage: http://www.umich.edu/~coetzee
Institution: University of Michigan
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition; Psycholinguistics
Abstract: Morphological concatenation often triggers phonological processes. For instance, addition of the plural suffix /-ən/ to Dutch nouns causes vowel lengthening in some nouns due to the stress-to-weight principle ([xɑt] vs. [ˈxaː.tən] ‘hole’). These kinds of processes often apply only to a subset of words – not all Dutch nouns undergo this process ([kɑt] vs. [ˈkɑ.tən] ‘cat’). Nouns need to be lexically indexed as either undergoing this process or not. I investigate how phonological grammar and lexical indexation are learned when learners are confronted with data like these. Based on learnability considerations, I hypothesise that learners acquire a grammar with default non-alternation, so that novel items are treated as non-alternating. I report the results of artificial language learning experiments compatible with this hypothesis, and model these results in a version of the Biased Constraint Demotion algorithm (Prince & Tesar ).

CUP AT LINGUIST

This article appears IN Phonology Vol. 26, Issue 1, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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