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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: Bare English-origin Nouns in Spanish: Rates, constraints, and discourse functions
Author: Rena Torres Cacoullos
Email: click here to access email
Institution: University of Pennsylvania
Author: Roger Blench
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://www.rogerblench.info/RBOP.htm
Institution: (personal interest - not currently working at a university)
Linguistic Field: Language Documentation; Syntax; Text/Corpus Linguistics
Subject Language: English
Spanish
Abstract: We test the hypothesis that single other-language-origin words are nonce loans (Sankoff, Poplack & Vanniarajan, 1990) as opposed to code-switches in a corpus-based study of English-origin nouns occurring spontaneously in New Mexican Spanish discourse. The object of study is determiner-less nouns, whose status is superficially ambiguous. The study shows that even with typologically similar languages, variable rule analysis can reveal details of the grammar that constitute conflict sites, even when relative frequencies for variants are similar. Though the rate of bare nouns is identical, their distribution patterns in Spanish and English differ. Linguistic conditioning parallel with the former, and at odds with the latter, shows that the contentious items are loanwords. In information flow terms (Dubois 1980, Thompson 1997), it is not lack of grammatical integration, but non-referential uses of nonce-loan nouns to form recipient-language predicates, that is manifested in zero determination.
Type: Individual Paper
Status: Completed
Venue: Language Variation and Change
Publication Info: 15:3.289-328


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