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"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?

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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

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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: 'Standardization: Myth or Reality?'
Paper URL: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2017363
Author: Debaprasad Bandyopadhyay
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://isid.academia.edu/DebaprasadBandyopadhyay
Institution: Indian Statistical Institute
Linguistic Field: Discipline of Linguistics; Sociolinguistics
Subject Language: Bengali
Abstract: This paper deals with the problems of standardization in connection with the industrialized or technocratic society, where one externalized linguistic variety is selected, appropriated, codified and approximated at the 'cost' of 'other' 'defeated' and 'captive' varieties (so-called dialect) within the stipulated boundary of an imagined linguistic nation state. By taking cue from Ray, P. (1968), the author shows that the term 'standard (tool)' is a term used in the technocratic market economy and it is borrowed in the realm of linguistic epistemology along with other terms like, 'language management', 'language development', 'language planning' etc. The author also shows, by analyzing the discourse of Labov (1972), the commoditization of externalized linguistic varieties in the all-pervading market economy. The author further extended the problems of standardization in the domain of grammaticalization as grammar, as a school textbook, a packaged commodity or a tool for linguistic colonization, extends and transmits a particular selected standard variety by captivating 'other' varieties. The process of standardization, in the context of print capitalistic nation building process, helps to create internal colonies as captive speakers of peripheral varieties or 'dialects' are colonized by the 'standard' variety. The author uses the term 'myth' in the Bertheian sense of the term to refer to something, which is at a time 'true and unreal'. Standardization is a 'truth' of a particular ideology and it is 'unreal' in the context of freedom of creative speaking subject.
Type: Individual Paper
Status: Completed
Publication Info: Indian Journal of Applied Linguistics, Vol. XXII, No. 2, pp. 73-76, 1996
URL: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2017363


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