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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: Learning Novel Morphology
Author: Emma Marsden
Institution: University of York
Author: John N. Williams
Institution: Research Centre for English and Applied Linguistics University of Cambridge
Author: Xierong Liu
Institution: University of York
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition; Morphology
Abstract: A large body of research has shown that suffixes—both inflectional and derivational—can be primed with adult native speakers, which informs our understanding of storage and access to morphology in mature systems. However, this line of research has not yet been conducted from an acquisition perspective: Little is known about whether or not representations of suffixes are formed after very little exposure to new morphology and, if so, about the nature of those representations or about the influence of attentional orientation and meaning at this initial stage. The three experiments reported here begin to address this gap by investigating the nature of suffixal representations following exposure to a small regular system of suffixed words. The experiment used crossmodal priming of recognition memory judgments to probe morphological representation. Although the lack of priming suggested that abstract morphological representations were not yet established, recognition judgments showed a clear sensitivity to sublexical morphemic units. The pattern of results was unaffected by the orientation of attention or the assignation of meaning to the words or suffixes during training. Offline tests of learning stem and suffix meanings also showed that both were learned to some extent even when attention was not oriented to their meanings and that the resulting knowledge was partially implicit. Thus, there was evidence of sensitivity to both the forms and meanings of the suffixes but not at the level required to support crossmodal priming. We argue that the reason for this may lie in the episodic nature of the knowledge gained after brief exposure.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Studies in Second Language Acquisition Vol. 35, Issue 4, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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