Featured Linguist!

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

Donate Now | Visit the Fund Drive Homepage

Amount Raised:


Still Needed:


Can anyone overtake Syntax in the Subfield Challenge ?

Grad School Challenge Leader: University of Washington

Publishing Partner: Cambridge University Press CUP Extra Publisher Login
amazon logo
More Info

New from Oxford University Press!


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.

New from Cambridge University Press!


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.

Query Details

Query Subject:   Nelleke Oostdijk
Author:   Elisabeth Burr
Submitter Email:  click here to access email

Linguistic LingField(s):  Discourse Analysis
Subject Language(s):  English

Query:   Could anybody please tell me whether Nelleke Oostdijk is a man or a
woman. I wouldn't want to use wrong references in a research paper I
am writing at the moment.
Thank you very much in advance
Elisabeth Burr -
Dr. phil. Elisabeth Burr FB 3/Romanistik/Gerhard-Mercator Universitaet
Duisburg GH Lotharstrasse 65/47048 Duisburg +49 203

Mon, 14 Apr 1997 07:46:03 GMT-2
dave gough
'man'+ 'no' as discourse markers.

I's wondering if people on the list could help me with some issues
regarding the use of 'no' and 'man'.


It is often commented by visitors from other English speaking
countries that South African English speakers say 'no' meaning
'yes', a usage which has been called by one person the 'affirmative
negative'. Here are some examples:

A: How are you?
B: No I'm fine

In Store

A: Could you deliver these for me?
B: No, that will be a pleasure.

In general the basis for the usage appears to be something like:

'You may have other thoughts about the [sometimes imposing]
proposition you've just put to me. I'll (politely) negate these
other thoughts before responding', so:

Are you sure you can manage?
No, there won't be a problem with that.

It won't occur in a context like:

A: Is your car new?

Where the 'yes' or 'no' that B. will give will be responding, not to
a possibly impolite belief, but rather simply to the proposition
itself. [Basically then, 'no' means 'yes' in limited contexts].

My questions here:

Do you find this type of usage elsewhere in the English speaking
world or in other languages? (It seems to be a general South African
feature too - happens in Afrikaans and in African languages).


Another features commented on by visitors to the country is the
frequent use of 'man' as an interjection by English speaking South

'Man, it's hot today'.
'Hurry up mom, man'
'Man, I can't get this right'

The interjection is used whatever the sex of the speaker or hearer.
It generally indicates a 'negative' emotional involvement of the
speaker of some sort - irritation, impatience or annoyance.

Again the question is: Does this feature occur in other varieties of
English? How is 'man' used in Jamaican English or 'black' English in
the USA? [my impressions from American TV programmes are not too
finely tuned, but it seems different]. Is 'man' used in this way in
other languages?.

Thanks for your time.

David Gough
Department of Linguistics
University of the Western Cape
Private Bag X17

e:mail dgough@artsn.uwc.ac.za
Tel: +27 21 959-2978 (w)

Mon, 14 Apr 1997 14:00:08 EST
Location of Swanton's and Gatschet's papers

I am trying to track down the present location of the Swanton's
and Gatschet's notebooks, mss, etc. I am particularly interested
in the materials for Comecrudo and Cotoname. If you know where these
are located or even better, where I can get microfilm copies of
them, I would certainly appreciate hearing from you.
Thank you,
Brad Coon If you are not living on
COON@CVAX.IPFW.INDIANA.EDU the edge, you are taking
http://www.ipfw.indiana.edu/east1/coon/web/ up too much space.

''Civilize the mind and make savage the body.''
Chinese proverb
LL Issue: 8.521
Date posted: 14-Apr-1997


Sums main page