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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: The impact of instruction on second-language implicit knowledge: Evidence against encapsulation
Author: Paul D. Toth
Institution: Temple University
Author: Pedro Guijarro-Fuentes
Institution: University of Plymouth
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition; Psycholinguistics
Subject Language: Spanish
Abstract: This paper compares explicit instruction in second-language Spanish with a control treatment on a written picture description task and a timed auditory grammaticality judgment task. Participants came from two intact, third-year US high school classes, with one experiencing a week of communicative lessons on the Spanish clitic se (n = 15) and the other exposed to se only incidentally (n = 20). Explicit instruction consisted of grammar rules with sentence-level examples, followed by communicative tasks. Three test versions were administered within a split-bloc design as a pretest, immediate posttest, and delayed posttest 6 weeks after instruction. The instructed group increased targetlike uses of se on both tasks and sustained gains through the delayed posttest, although first-language transfer errors persisted. Meanwhile, overgeneralization errors centered on semantic and syntactic contexts similar to the instructional object, aligning with the unergative–unaccusative distinction among intransitive verbs. It is argued that the data provide evidence for the permeability of second-language implicit knowledge to explicit instruction and against total encapsulation as a model of the mind.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Applied Psycholinguistics Vol. 34, Issue 6, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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