"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
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.
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.
Pieter Muysken's article on modeling and interpreting language contact phenomena constitutes an important contribution. The approach chosen is a top–down one, building on the author's extensive knowledge of all matters relating to language contact. The paper aims at integrating a wide range of factors and levels of social, cognitive, and linguistic accounts, incorporating findings on bilingual individuals in the same way as on language systems in contact and bilingual speech communities. It enables the reader to place seemingly disparate phenomena in a wider perspective and to relate quite divergent manifestations of language contact to one another in a principled way. In accordance with its ambitious goal, the paper proposes a high level of generalization, or abstraction.