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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: Infants' gestures influence mothers' provision of object, action and internal state labels
Author: Janet Olson
Institution: Northern Illinois University
Author: Elise Frank Masur
Institution: Northern Illinois University
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition
Abstract: Twenty-four infants at 1 ; 1 and their mothers were videotaped for 18 minutes while playing. Infants' pointing, reaching and object-extending gestures were coded in three communicative intent contexts: proto-declarative, or commenting; proto-imperative, or requesting; and ambiguous. Mothers' responses to infants' gestures were coded as object labels, action labels, internal state labels and non-labeling utterances. Infants most often pointed in the proto-declarative and used object extensions in the proto-imperative context. Infants produced pointing and reaching equivalently in the ambiguous context. Mothers' responses included object labels more often in response to points than object extensions. In contrast, mothers provided action labels most often in response to object extensions. Mothers produced large proportions of internal state labels, although the type varied by gesture. Results suggest mothers' labels following infants' gestures may serve as a mechanism for vocabulary acquisition and internal state understanding.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Journal of Child Language Vol. 38, Issue 5, which you can read on Cambridge's site .



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