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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: Mastering inflectional suffixes: a longitudinal study of beginning writers' spellings*
Author: Kathryn Turnbull
Institution: University of Western Ontario
Author: D Hélène Deacon
Institution: Dalhousie University
Author: Elizabeth Kay-Raining Bird
Institution: Dalhousie University
Linguistic Field: Applied Linguistics; Language Acquisition
Subject Language: English
Abstract: This study tracked the order in which ten beginning spellers (M age=5 ; 05; SD=0·21 years) mastered the correct spellings of common inflectional suffixes in English. Spellings from children's journals from kindergarten and grade 1 were coded. An inflectional suffix was judged to be mastered when children spelled it accurately in 90 percent of the contexts in which it was grammatically required, a criterion used to study the order of acquisition of grammatical morphemes in oral language. The results indicated that the order in which children learned to spell inflectional suffixes correctly is similar to the order in which they learn to use them in oral language, before school age. Discrepancies between the order of mastery for inflectional suffixes in written and oral language are discussed in terms of English spelling conventions, which introduce variables into the spelling of inflected words that are not present in oral language.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Journal of Child Language Vol. 38, Issue 3, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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