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The Social Origins of Language

By Daniel Dor

Presents a new theoretical framework for the origins of human language and sets key issues in language evolution in their wider context within biological and cultural evolution


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Preposition Placement in English: A Usage-Based Approach

By Thomas Hoffmann

This is the first study that empirically investigates preposition placement across all clause types. The study compares first-language (British English) and second-language (Kenyan English) data and will therefore appeal to readers interested in world Englishes. Over 100 authentic corpus examples are discussed in the text, which will appeal to those who want to see 'real data'


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Academic Paper


Title: Variation and change in English resultative constructions
Author: Britta Mondorf
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
Linguistic Field: Sociolinguistics; Syntax
Subject Language: English
Abstract: The system of English resultative constructions is in a state of flux characterized by variation between two of its most prominent competitors, way-constructions as in "She worked her way to the top" and reflexive structures as in "She worked herself to the top." Although this competition has occasionally been addressed in the literature (cf. Jackendoff, 1990:213; Kirchner, 1951:158; Salkoff, 1988:54ff.), the present findings reveal that the long-standing rivalry between these structures has resulted in an increased use of the way-construction at the expense of reflexive structures. In addition, the coexistence of way-constructions with semantically overlapping reflexive structures eventually culminated in a reorganization of the system of English resultatives involving a diversification of the functions performed by each variant resulting in a semantically motivated division of labour. The way-construction turns out to be particularly successful in conveying concrete meanings, whereas reflexive structures can still to some extent stand their ground with abstract uses. The present paper relates the proliferation of the way-construction to grammaticalization theory.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Language Variation and Change Vol. 22, Issue 3, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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