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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: What's in a compound?
Author: Andrew Spencer
Linguistic Field: Morphology
Subject Language: Chukot
Swedish
English
German
Abstract: The Oxford Handbook of Compounding surveys a variety of theoretical and descriptive issues, presenting overviews of compounding in a number of frameworks and sketches of compounding in a number of languages. Much of the book deals with Germanic noun-noun compounding. I take up some of the theoretical questions raised surrounding such constructions, in particular, the notion of attributive modification in noun-headed compounds. I focus on two issues. The first is the semantic relation between the head noun and its nominal modifier. Several authors repeat the argument that there is a small(-ish) fixed number of general semantic relations in noun-noun compounds ('Lees's solution'), but I argue that the correct way to look at such compounds is what I call 'Downing's solution', in which we assume that the relation is specified pragmatically, and hence could be any relation at all. The second issue is the way that adjectives modify nouns inside compounds. Although there are languages in which compounded adjectives modify just as they do in phrases (Chukchee, Arleplog Swedish), in general the adjective has a classifier role and not that of a compositional attributive modifier. Thus, even if an English (or German) adjective-noun compound looks compositional, it isn't.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Journal of Linguistics Vol. 47, Issue 2, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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